By Hileni Nembwaya
FO L L O W I N G lengthy land negotiations between Ongwediva town council and Omatando community to formalise the settlement, some residents are up in arms with the town council objecting to the formalisation process.
Earlier this year, the council preceded the formalisation process by registering all properties at Omatando.
According to some concerned residents who approached Confidente they are opposing the registration of their properties as they fear council might impose exorbitant rates and taxes on them.
“We worked hard to build our houses and now the town council wants to take over our properties by charging high rates. Some of us have big ervens and we fear the high rates and taxes that might be imposed on us. We are totally against this whole process,” said one of the concerned residents.
Ongwediva corporate communications officer, Jackson Muma informed Confidente that the aim of registration is to provide council with information necessary for the planning process and no rates and taxes will be imposed before due process is carried out.
“We just want to find out how many properties are at Omatando. We are not looking at imposing any taxes any time soon. That will be done in the future,” said Muma.
He further added that over 1 000 properties have so far been registered and Friday will be the due date for the registration of all properties.
The council has made a budgetary provision of N$800 000 during the financial year 2016/2017 towards the formalisation of Omatando.
In October 2016, the meeting resolved that the community of Omatando and council work together in the best of development, where Omatando 1, 2 and 3 will be formalised.
Homestead owners are urged to cease the sale of plots with immediate effect, as the responsibility of handling land matters is strictly vested with the town council.
Omatando 1, 2, and 3 became part of Ongwediva townlands No. 1156 through the Government Gazette No. 5038 of September 2012 in accordance with the Local Authorities Act 23 of 1992.
The alteration of town borders for about eight kilometers north ward included villages such as; Okatope, Oupumako, Omusheshe, Okaandje, Okahenge, part of Ondjodjo, Oshidhilaadhila, Ohendjele and Omayango.
The council further said all persons who have acquired land from pre-existing owners and have constructed brick walls and corrugated sheet structures, as well and all persons who claim pre-existing rights of leasehold (homestead and crop field owners) in Omatando have the opportunity to be registered and engaged in the process of negotiations for the council to acquire land for development purposes.
Confidente. Lifting the Lid. Copyright © 2015