RESIDENTS in Kavango East Region fear that poaching and the prevalent looting of timber in the region will continue unabated and unsupervised, after the Ministry of Environment and Tourism’s decision to close office.
A public member who spoke on condition of anonymity expressed disappointment in the ministry’s decision, saying that it is a devastating move for the region at a time when timber looting is at its highest peak.
“Is this so that poachers and the looting of trees can continue unsupervised and free for all? There will even be more looting of forests and illegal hunting,” He said.
The ministry’s Spokesperson Romeo Muyunda confirmed that the MET is closing down its Ndiyona settlemenmt sub-division in the constituency. Three staff members at the office will be relocated to either the Buffalo or Mahango stations at the periphery of the Bwabwata National park.
“The reason for this is that the staff accommodation at Ndiyona is no longer fit to be inhabited as they are Kimbo houses. The Buffalo and Mahango station have enough infrastructure to host the Ndiyona Office there. Therefore, the Ministry assures our clients and the public that service will be still be rendered to the communities of Ndiyona from the new location,” Muynda added.
This, he said will not hinder service delivery to the those communities. This includes issues of tree logging and poaching and other issues related to the protection of natural resources.
MET was renting the office from the Gciriku Traditional Authority at the cost of N$ 750 per month, for the past 20 years.