Kavango East receives funding to advance food production

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Desie Heita

Windhoek-Although Kavango East has seen a reduction in its development budget allocation for 2017/18, it can take solace in the fact that the allocated amount seeks to strengthen the region’s quest to entrench itself as the breadbasket of the northern-eastern part of the country, if not the entire country.

A bulk of the N$241.9 million allocated for this year in the development budget goes to agricultural activities, through the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry. In fact, the agricultural ministry received N$112.5 million which would go towards integrated forest resources management, the implementation of community-based management, grain storage facilities and the improvement of animal health.

The green schemes received a boost of N$33 million, while the national horticulture development initiative received an injection of N$30 million. The capital injection appears to be a shot in the arm of ‘Operation Werengendje’, which is a pet project of Kavango East Regional Governor Samuel Mbambo.

Operation Werengendje is aimed at motivating the residents of Kavango East to produce food, and turn the region into the food basket of the country. The region is already known for its food production, but Mbambo has envisioned food production at a massive scale with commercial production. To instil the spirit of food production, even urban dwellers are being encouraged to cultivate veggies in their backyards.

The education ministry has been allocated N$22.5 million for the renovation of schools, construction of a new primary school at Rundu Rural West, and construction of teachers accommodation. The Rukonga Vision School received another capital injection of N$2 million.

The health ministry received N$22.8 million for the construction and renovation of Rundu hospital, construction and upgrading of primary health clinics in the region and the upgrading and extension of Rundu Regional Health Training Centre. Andara hospital also received a capital injection of N$5 million for upgrading and renovation.

The Ministry of Rural and Urban Development eceived N$10 million for the construction of service infrastructure at Rundu, Divundu and Ndiyona.

The Ministry of Works and Transport received N$11 million for the installation of solar panels at government offices and upgrading IT infrastructure at the regional offices. But the bulk of the money, N$10 million, is for the maintenance of paved and unpaved roads in the region.

The Ministry of Sport, Youth and National Service received N$14 million for the construction of Fran’s Dimbare Integrated Rural Youth Development Centre. The Ministry of Land Reform received N$7 million for the development of communal areas, among other activities.

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