THE residents of the Etayi Constituency in the Omusati Region are up in arms against what they suspect to be a last-minute attempt by private contractors to change an already approved rural electrification plan in order to make more money for themselves while depriving the wider community of the intended rural electrification benefits.
Villagers allege that the approved plan made provision of an electrical power-line from the Etayi settlement to the Oshalembe Combined School, thereby making electrical power accessible to local shebeens and traditional homesteads along the five kilometer power-line.
However, contractors have allegedly devised a short cut and are now planning to erect the power-line along an oshana from Odimbwa village straight to the Oshalembe school, thereby cutting costs but depriving the community of the intended benefits.
“We will not allow that to happen,” said community spokesperson Nestor Kambidi. “We are determined to make sure that the contractor stick to the original plan”.
Villagers are accusing the contractors of trying to avoid compensating villagers across whose mahangu fields the power-line would be erected, even though compensation monies are included in the tender price.
Members of the community will present their demands to the unidentified contractor and to the constituency councilor John Elisa on Wednesday.
Councilor Elisa could not be reached for comment as he was attending a regional council meeting at Outapi on Monday.