Jan 20, 2009

Rehoboth Baster: Free Land Plots Given

Active Image The first 50 residents benefit from the free-erven programme handed out by Rehoboth town Council.
Below is an article published by: New Era

The Rehoboth Town Council handed out the first batch of 176 erven to residents under its free-erven programme in accordance with the Rukoro Report of 1992 and ‘burghers’ received plots under the Baster Paternal Law on Saturday.

The first 50 residents that receive letters to this effect should go to the town council office this week with all relevant certified documents for the completion of a deed of donation form, plus an amount of N$500, which according to the town’s mayor George Dax, is a one-off payment for municipal services on the erven.

A further N$32.40 is required for a valuation certificate, as well as an additional N$150 to be paid at the deeds office at the town.

Documents required by the council are identity cards, birth certificates and marriage certificates.

If a benefactor of the free-erven programme is deceased, town council requests a death certificate, an identity document of the deceased’s letter of execution, as well as a copy of the executor’s identity document.

Sitting at the Hermanus van Wyk Hall in the town after receiving her red letter, 69-year-old Sofia Botes said: “I am very happy today; I have waited for this for so many years.”

The Rukoro Report was endorsed by Cabinet to make 3 000 erven available to displaced black people under Apartheid rule, within the boundaries of the town, and 2 500 to the Rehoboth Basters under the Paternal Laws (“Vaderlike Wette”).

The “burgers” (the Basters) were the first recipients of the plots, with council indicating that the remaining 3 000 plots would be allocated at a date still to be announced.

Dax said the process proposed under the Rukoro Report could not be executed before because Rehoboth was not yet proclaimed a town and hence not properly mapped out.

The Rehoboth was proclaimed a town on April 15, 1999.

“[It] is just the first phase of this project,” said Dax. “[This] cannot be a one-off project and would thus be done in phases.”

He said there were certain beneficiaries, especially in the Block E area of the town, who have already benefited from the programme and that the council has therefore deemed it necessary to beneficiate other areas.

A committee established for the express purpose thereof, consisting of members of the town council, community representatives, officials of the Ministry of Lands and Resettlement, and constituency councillors, allocated the plots.

Dax said the council has provided 250 beneficiaries with housing under the decentralised Build Together programme, adding that it is currently completing a seventh and eighth phase of this programme.

Moreover, he said, the council is in the final constructing phase of residential units in Block F on land contributed by the council.

The units under construction here, he added, are to provide housing for the elderly and the physically disabled, for which future residents will have to pay “minor” fees for service delivery.

Under the Rehoboth Development Forum (Redefor), council has also provided three five-hectare plots for infrastructural development and employment creation.

The town council has also introduced an amnesty programme under which as much as 70 percent of residents’ debt will be written off if residents pay the remaining 30 percent of the balance within the next six months.