Public servants to wait longer for govt houses

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Selma Ikela

Windhoek-With no additional houses being built, the Ministry of Works and Transport said civil servants on the waiting list to occupy government houses or flats would have to wait a little longer to be accommodated.

Ministry of Works and Transport spokesperson Julius Ngweda acknowledges that some civil servants have complained that they have been on the waiting list for years without being accommodated.

“What civil servants need to know is the [number of] properties is not increasing. We sold some of the property, while the number of flats remains the same. If no one retires, is transferred with work to a different town or passes on, there is no space to be accommodated,” he explained.

The Works Ministry has 56 pool houses and 474 pool flats in Windhoek that accommodate civil servants. The ministry also has 214 houses assigned to various ministries, with the Ministry of Safety and Security occupying 113 houses.

The Ministry of Works has a further 76 flats assigned around Windhoek that were allocated to various ministries. The Ministry of Works and Transport pays all rates and taxes for assigned houses, flats, pool houses and pool flats countrywide.

Tenants occupying these properties pay the water and electricity bills and a percentage of their income towards rental fees.

An occupant in a bachelor flat pays a rental fee of 4 percent of their salary, while an occupant in a two-bedroomed house pays a rental fee of 6 percent. An occupant in a three-bedroomed house pays 8 percent of their income towards rental fees. A tenant may occupy this house or flat until they retire, are transferred with work to different town or die.

Ngweda further said the number of houses available has decreased. On some premises where houses previously stood, they constructed offices, such as the Auditor-General’s Office and the headquarters of the SADC Secretariat.

Ngweda also stated there were many houses that were identified, for which the tenants were given offers to purchase the houses.

“When you are in a government house you are given an offer. It is up to you to come to the ministry and say you are willing to buy the house on the offer,” said Ngweda, adding that many current tenants have shown an interest in buying a government house.

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