A group of men at work.

UPDATE: JAN-MAR 2021 Programme for the Provision of Low-cost Land for Housing

EXPANSION

During the early months of 2021, several local authorities requested a presentation on the programme, including the towns of Katima Mulilo, Rundu, Okongo, Eenhana, Otavi, Okakarara, Omaruru, Henties Bay, Rehoboth, Stampriet and Omuthiya. With three of these towns MoUs are currently being prepared and in another three, preparatory discussions are in an advanced state. The programme aims to be active in a total of at least 15 towns by June 2021.

HARAMBEE PROSPERITY PLAN 2

The provision of affordable land for housing remains one of the most pressing development issues in Namibia. The Harambee Prosperity Plan 2 mentions land delivery as one of the 5 goals in the chapter on social progression, with Development Workshop being mentioned as one of the implementation partners.

With land delivery as a national development priority, the DWN/NCE programme delivers just that: through partnership agreements, the programme becomes an extended arm of the local authority to plan, survey and service land with no additional costs to the local authority. Without profits and hidden costs, the costs of servicing land become much lower.

FINANCING TO BUILD HOMES

In January, FNB launched a new loan scheme for clients of the programme. Any client that finalized the payment of her/his plot becomes eligible for a loan up to NAD 50,000 for a period of 1-5 years in order to build a house on the plot. The loan scheme is designed for lower-income earners who need smaller amounts over shorter periods of time. The scheme has been launched in Oshakati and Okahao and the first loans have been approved.

PROJECT PROGRESS

Keetmanshoop (320 plots): Client registration has initiated in Keetmanshoop in late March. Within the first few days, more than 40 residents registered. Plots with access roads, water and sewer connections are sold at NAD 31,797. As in all projects, clients pay into a local FNB bank account that is jointly managed by the Municipality and DWN, and from which professional fees and the construction of services are paid.

Opuwo (437 plots): Client registration has continued, with a total of 165 residents that have registered. Plots with access roads, water and sewer connection cost 35,669.

Okahao: In the first phase a total of 371 plots were serviced with water reticulation and 316 erven are sold, with a current waiting list of 126 clients. Plots with access roads and water connections cost NAD 14,000.

Oniipa (117 plots): With the layout approved by the Council and preliminary engineering designs completed, client registration was scheduled to commence in March, but was then postponed to April. Plots with access roads and water connections cost NAD 14,410.

All above costs include conveyancing and transfer of title to the new owners. In Oshakati, a new area is to be allocated to the programme in April. In Karibib sales continue, although slower than anticipated, mainly due to the high development costs caused by the solid rock in the project area.

EXCHANGE VISITS

On the 25th of March, Okakarara Town Council did an exchange visit to Oshakati and Okahao, to learn more about the land programme in those two towns. Meetings were held with councillors, CEOs and technical staff.

WEB-GIS Portal

See the following website where all currently active extensions are visible: https://development-workshop-data-hub-dwn.hub.arcgis.com/

For additional information do not hesitate to contact the CEO offices of the respective towns where the land programme is implemented.


HOW DOES IT WORK?

The objective of the programme is to provide assistance to local authorities in the provision of affordable land for housing.

THE PROGRAMME WORKS AS FOLLOWS

  1. DWN enters into partnership with a local authority, where DWN acts as an agent on behalf of the local authority to develop low-cost residential land;
  2. The local authority provides land, and DWN (together with its private sector partners) provides all services to develop the land, including town planning, land surveying, engineering and conveyancing;
  3. The cost of the residential plots is calculated on the basis of all costs incurred for the development of the new extension, including construction of services (water, electricity, sewer), town planning, land surveying, engineering and conveyancing. There is no profit on the sale of land nor hidden costs, and the land remains the property of the local authority until title is transferred to the new owners;
  4. Extensions can be developed with partial services only in order to keep the costs low (per decisions taken by the respective local authority).

FINANCIAL MANAGEMENT

  1. All income and expenditures of a project in a specific town are managed through a FNB joint bank account, with two signatories from the local authority and two signatories from DWN. Any transaction from the account needs one signature from each party;
  2. An initial donation from DWN/NCE is deposited into this account, and all payments of clients that are purchasing plots also go into this account;
  3. The account serves to pay the service providers (such as town planner) and the construction of services;
  4. The donation serves to provide initial cash flow and acts as a revolving fund. After one project cycle (extension) is concluded and all clients have paid off their land, the amount of the initial donation is available again for the next phase.

DONORS & SUPPORTERS

Main donors & supporters: B2Gold, RMB, German Development Cooperation, FNB, and the NCE.

Additional donors: Bannerman Resources and the Namibian Chamber of Mines.

The contributions of these institutions have almost exclusively been used to establish revolving funds in the different towns.

The programme is jointly implemented by DWN and the NCE and with technical support from Urban Dynamics (town planner), Strydom & Associates (land surveyor), Knight PiƩsold (Engineer), Lithon (Engineer) and ESI Attorneys (Conveyancer). All these institutions have provided essential support from the beginning, for the design and successful implementation of the programme.