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Namibia records 27 veld fires in two weeks

Namibia records 27 veld fires in two weeks

Maria David 


NAMIBIA has recorded a total of 27 veld fires countrywide in the last two weeks, burning 59 farms and leaving 143 000 hectares in ashes.


The fires from the end of September to early October were recorded in the areas of Outjo, Otjiwarongo, Stenhausen, Windhoek, Okahandja, Tsumeb, the Tsintsabis district and the Zambezi Region.


Spokesperson of the Ministry of Environment, Forestry and Tourism, Romeo Muyunda, said they have managed to contain the burning fire at the Stenhausen District in the Hardap Region that raged for at least four days and caused massive destruction to properties. 


So far, a total of 135 livestock and 75 wild animals were killed, and infrastructure like fences and water pipes were completely destroyed.


Namibia veld fires burning farms hectares ashes


He added that it is believed that most of the fires were caused by arsonists.


Charcoal production operations, mechanical appliances such as graders, recreational activities and local natural resources management-related activities such as hunting and thatch-grass harvesting, have also contributed to the fires.


He called on charcoal makers to take fire preventative measures when involved in charcoal making activities.


“Fortunately, there has been no fatalities reported in the last two weeks,” he said.


Muyunda said that his ministry continues to monitor the outbreaks of forest and veld fires nationwide based on remote sensing and aerial surveillance techniques. 


The ministry is busy with a comprehensive assessment of damages caused by the fire, and is calling on the public to report any fires as soon as possible for swift response.


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