Windhoek-There were 7 388 refugees and asylum seekers residing in Namibia – with an estimated 3 400 reported to have since disappeared – leaving 3 988 accounted for by the Ministry of Home Affairs and Immigration.
Osire Refugee Settlement once housed more than 20 000 refugees and asylum seekers, but that number fell to less than 4 000 since 2014 after government repatriated all the Angolan nationals back to their country.
Keetmanshoop-Selling off some of their livestock is the best possible solution for farmers in the drought stricken Warmbad area, which reportedly received between 3 and 10 millimetres of rain last season.
Windhoek-Namibians can breathe a collective sigh of relief following major local commercial millers’ guarantee that the situation is under control as there are no major problems experienced so far in importing cereals in Namibia.
The Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry says key local millers have assured the nation that there will be no major price increase in the next few months, except in the event of significant weakening of the South African Rand (to which the Namibian dollar is pegged) against the US dollar.
Windhoek-The Namibia Red Cross Society (NRCS) received a N$7.2 million grant from the European Union and the Spanish Red Cross (SRC) to promote renewable energy for climate change mitigation in Namibia.
The NRCS and SRC will be working on a project titled ‘Promoting renewable energy for climate change mitigation initiatives in Namibia.’
The main objective is to promote the use of renewable forms of energy and energy efficient technologies in ten selected rural communities in Kavango East, Kavango West and Zambezi regions.
By Kuzeeko Tjitemisa
Windhoek-The Directorate of Immigration and Border Control deported 2 600 prohibited immigrants in 2016, Home Affairs and Immigration Minister Pendukeni Iivula-Ithana announced last week.
Motivating her ministry’s budget in the National Assembly on Wednesday, Iivula-Ithana said the 2016/2017 financial year is expected to launch a new border control management system and will spend resources on change management functional training.
Onaame-Prospects of a good harvest have disappeared for many subsistence mahangu farmers in various villages in Ohangwena Region as their crops are currently submerged in floodwater.
Crops have turned yellow and villagers whose livelihoods depend on mahangu as a staple food have abandoned their fields, bracing themselves for the hard times ahead. Farmers said the situation does not only threaten their food security, but also affects them emotionally as last year’s harvest was also next to nothing because of the recurring drought.
Oshakati-The Minister of Urban and Rural Development, Sophia Shaningwa, recently visited flood victims in Omusati and Oshana regions to familiarise herself with their needs and living conditions.
Shaningwa visited Okalongo, Tsandi and Ekuku flood reception areas at Oshakati in Oshana Region that accommodate 570 flood victims who include 123 children under five years of age, 159 children from ages six to 18 years and 289 adults.
Pregnant women and people with disabilities are also accommodated at the reception centres in 32 tents.
Omuthiya – Farmers in the Oshikoto Region are hopeful that this year they will have a good harvest despite the outbreak of worms in their fields in recent weeks. One of the hopeful farmers from Omuthiya, Esther Clonelius, who has been very busy weeding her three fields, says a part of one of her fields, situated a few kilometres outside Omuthiya, is already infested by unidentified worms.
Clonelius described the worms as having a red and greenish colour but has not reported the matter to the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry.
Ongwediva-Some 23,581 learners from schools in Omusati Region are currently idling at home as a precautionary measure taken by 67 schools that have been flooded by the incessant heavy rains that have deluged the north of Namibia in recent weeks.
Apart from Omusati Region, schools in Ohangwena are also flooded with rainwater gushing into a number of classrooms.
Laban Shapange, the director of education in Omusati Region said the schools would re-open as soon as the floodwater has subsided.
Windhoek-Thousands of villagers in the flood-prone Kabbe South Constituency in the Zambezi Region have refused to move to higher ground saying they will miss out on seasonal delicacies that come with fresh-water fishing.
The Zambezi Regional Governor, Lawrence Sampofu, last month warned that the annual flooding of the Zambezi River could come and hence he urged villagers in Kabbe South Constituency to move to higher ground.
Omuthiya-Oshikoto Region has reported 102 new malaria cases in the first three weeks of January 2017, a rise when compared to the 25 cases recorded in the same period in 2016. Fortunately no deaths were recorded from the disease.
The increase was as a result of pools of stagnant water due to recent good rains. It was reported last year that cases of malaria were exceptionally high in Ohangwena Region where about 430 cases and unconfirmed fatalities were recorded.
Ongwediva-At least 32 percent of the Namibian population or 700 000 people depend on the government’s drought relief programme, according to the latest Agricultural Input and Household Food Security Situation Report.
The report that was issued last month states that because the country experienced the worst drought in its history, since 2012 the government has been putting more efforts and resources into mitigating the impacts of drought, which has not only affected the agriculture sector but also the national economy as a whole.
by Albertina Nakale
The Zambezi chief regional officer Regina Ndopu-Lubinda says even though the country received some showers over the past couple of weeks the drought persists.
In an interview with New Era yesterday she said Zambezi residents are busy cultivating and ploughing their fields following recent showers. But she said the region would only determine the effect and impact of the drought once people harvest next year.
by Deon Schlechter
Some 729 000 people in the rural areas have been affected by this year’s drought and this account for about 57 percent of the rural population. Of these, about 596 000 are in urgent need of humanitarian assistance.
By Deon Schlechter
More than 27 presentations were made in the plenary sessions from across the world while nine side events were also held, on drought management, before over 400 delegates finalised the Windhoek Drought Declaration. The declaration on drought was birthed during last week’s first ever African Drought Conference that was held in Windhoek.
The Namibia Red Cross Society (NRCS) is struggling to raise N$13.4 million to give support to 11 500 vulnerable people as it only managed to raise 15 percent of the funding required and will only be able to provide for 1 200 people.
By: Nuusita Ashipala
Many subsistence farmers whose crop fields were submerged by heavy floodwaters in February in Ruacana are said to be entirely dependent on drought relief – and for those who qualify, on social grants such as the old age pension.
The heavy floods that hit the village of Otjihitua in Ruacana Constituency left 214 people relocated without food and shelter.
In total, 50 households comprising of 364 people were affected – however only 30 households were relocated.
by Nuusita Ashipala
As the drought persists, small-scale farmers along the Calueque-Oshakati Water Canal use water drawn from the canal to their advantage to produce enough to sustain their families and to sell the surplus on the local market.
One such farmer is 41-year-old Absalom Johannes from Okafa-koishongo village near Outapi, who says poverty can be defeated once every able-bodied person works towards food production.
by Deon Schlechter
The Agronomy Department of AgriBusDev, the business arm of government’s agricultural development project, says the drought has had severe negative effects on irrigation farming over the past three years, during which the country has been suffering from consistent droughts.
The country is heavily reliant on surface water irrigation from its four perennial rivers (Kavango, Zambezi, Kunene and Orange), as well as Hardap dam and underground water resources in the Maize Triangle (Otavi, Tsumeb and Grootfontein).
by Deon Schelchter
Late rains have dramatically changed the expectations of the total white maize harvest from the Maize Triangle and immediate environs.
The total maize harvest is now projected at more than 44 000 tonnes, after 9 391 hectares were planted countrywide. Almost 4 400 hectares were planted in the Maize Triangle, the traditional breadbasket of the country. Some 16 120 tonnes are now expected from this area.