Aggrieved Otjinene farmers demonstrate against MTA

A group of concerned aspiring farmers in the Otjinene Constituency of the Omaheke Region on Thursday took to the streets to air their grievances against the Maharero Traditional Authority (MTA).

The group led by Swapo district coordinator Assaria Tjingaete in their petition accused the MTA of alleged nepotism, corruption and malpractices.

It demanded that some implicated traditional councillors resign, blaming them for promoting tribalism, nepotism, chauvinism and personality cults.

The MTA instead of being free and representing the people of Otjinene fairly, are misinforming, misleading and instigating division among members of that community, it said.

‘We are tired of your unlawful practices of allowing your family members to apply for land and mapping a number of land and selling to non-inhabitants of our areas for enriching yourselves. We will not let you continue mapping our land surrounding our villages in the names of your children and selling them to strangers,’ the group said.

‘We are requestin
g the communal land board, the chief, the Anti-Corruption Commission and the Office of the Ombudsman to set up a team and investigate the aforementioned malpractices, deliberate practices and corruption. The implicated councillors should recuse themselves or go on permanent retirement,’ they added in the petition.

Receiving the petition, Dave Ndjavera, special adviser to the MTA said they were not informed of the demonstration, however Tjingaete had reported the aforementioned alleged corruption and nepotism cases to the authority, thus, they were waiting for him to come for his hearing as agreed.

‘We were having a hearing on the objection of the customary land right that has been allocated by the traditional authority some years back. The objector did not turn up on time and said he’d only be available in the afternoon and he came here with a group without notifying the authority,’ Ndjavera said.

‘The Maharero Traditional Authority is a representative of the people that are living in the communal areas of
Otjinene irrespective of their political affiliation, religion and tribes. We are guided by the provisions of the Traditional Authorities Act. Thus, there are no favouritism, nepotism and maladministration,’ he said.

Source: Namibia Press Agency