Onjuva-After waiting for almost three decades for a new clinic residents of Onjuva and surrounding communities in the Kunene Region recently had their prayers answered when the Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr Bernard Haufiku, handed over the new health facility to the community.
Haufiku inaugurated the clinic at a ceremony witnessed by hundreds of people who had sought a clinic since independence.
Close to 2,000 residents of Onjuva and nearby villages will have access to basic primary health care after the facility was opened by Haufiku at Onuva village.
The clinic, which is situated about 230km from Opuwo, was constructed with funds availed by the US government through its embassy in Windhoek
According to the Unites States Ambassador to Namibia, Thomas Daughton, the US Defence Department understands that peace depends on basic human needs being met, thus their involvement in a number of projects aimed at meeting basic human needs in Namibia and Africa at large.
Its construction commenced late in 2009, but work came to a halt in 2011 due to certain legal complications and the availability of funds.
In 2016 the health ministry stepped in and provided the remaining funds that enabled the project to be completed this year.
The clinic was constructed at a cost in excess of N$4.7 million of which N$3 million came from the US Department of Defence and the rest from the Namibian government.
Health minister Haufiku said his ministry and that of defence reached an agreement to use the Namibian Defence Force helicopter to transport critically ill patients and expecting mothers from Onjuva Clinic to Opuwo District Hospital, as the road network between Onjuva and Opuwo is very bad and it takes one at least more than six hours to reach the hospital by car.
* Malakia Nashongo is an information officer working for the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology in Kunene Region.