Namibia: Thousands of Women Get Commercial Farms

By Albertina Nakale

Windhoek — Of the 5 231 individuals who benefitted from the resettlement programme since independence to date, 1 405 are female, while 2 039 are men.


The remaining 1 787 are classified as ‘group resettlement’.

Director for land reform and resettlement in the Ministry of Land Reform Peter Nangolo said all landless Namibians that apply for resettlement are considered without gender discrimination.

At independence, government inherited a skewed land distribution where 36.2 million hectares were owned by 4 664 previously advantaged individual farmers.

About 150 000 families occupied 33.5 million hectares of communal land, while black Namibians owned only 181 commercial farms (2.9 percent) of agricultural land.

It was against this background that a national land conference was convened in 1991 to discuss the disparity.

Meanwhile, out of 16 commissioners on the Land Reform Advisory Commission, six are women and 10 men. Two of the women who sit on Communal Land Boards are engaged in farming and the other two members have expertise in communal land issues, Nangolo further explained.

Meanwhile, a total of 2 089 women had access to credit facilities through Agribank between 1990 and 2015, compared to 5 059 men.

Such loan facilities were availed towards acquiring farmland, de-bushing, for farm vehicles, tractors, implements, improvements, infrastructure, labourers’ housing, livestock and production across Namibia

In terms of the government’s post-settlement support programme, Nangolo said about 1 550 women received both training and mentorship on the southern side of the Veterinary Cordon Fence, in comparison to the 4 476 male counterparts, who benefited from training.

In the northern communal areas, 1 762 females received both mentorship and training, compared to 2 498 men.

In a quest to address land dispossession, the Ministry of Land Reform has acquired 502 farms, measuring over 3.1 million hectares and worth more than N$1.7 billion.

At least 5 231 beneficiaries have been resettled since 1990.

Under the Affirmative Action Loan Scheme programme that is jointly administered by Agribank and the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, a further 3.4 million hectares have been acquired at a cost of N$762 million.

Moreover, 98 000 customary land rights and 1 079 leasehold rights have been registered since 1990.


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