Okondjatu-Speaker of the National Assembly, Professor Peter Katjavivi, commended the organising committee of the first-ever Okondjatu community expo when he officially opened the event last Friday.
The Speaker was happy the expo had attracted a considerable number of exhibitors even from beyond Namibia’s borders.
“It is a great achievement that the first-ever expo has already attracted over 250 exhibitors, including some from as far as Tanzania. This is a community whose economy is mainly supported by cattle breeding. I, therefore, hope that this expo will go a long way in creating economic linkages that will speak to the needs and demands of the local economy so as to create value addition,” he stated.
Okondjatu lies over 200 kilometres south of Otjiwarongo in the Otjozondjupa region.
The expo promoted small and medium enterprises by creating a platform for them to exhibit their products and services in order to boost trade and the local economy.
According to Katjavivi, with farming at the centre of the local economy in the area, the Okondjatu community has the potential to contribute to food security.
He noted that this initiative would also help alleviate many socio-economic challenges facing the Okondjatu community such as lack of housing, high unemployment, alcohol and drug abuse and lack of childhood development centres.
“I hope this expo will go a long way in creating business opportunities that men and women with good business acumen can exploit to the maximum, so as to help address the challenges that we face in this area and beyond,” stated Katjavivi.
Katjavivi further called for the promotion of cultures through culinary, artifacts and cultural performances.
“I encourage members of our various communities to take pride of our traditional and cultural heritage through highlighting our local foods, cultural performances and artisan works. All these will offer the community equitable benefits if marketed properly,” stated the Speaker.
The week-long expo that started last Wednesday with horse racing event, music performances and a beauty contest forming part of activities, ended on Sunday.
*George Sanzila works as Chief Information Officer in the Division: Research, Information, Publications and Editorial Services at the National Assembly.