Namibia: Erindi Should Not Be Sold to Foreigners


By Mathias Haufiku, New Era

Date Published

Windhoek — Nudo will stage a ‘permanent mass demonstration’ if the Erindi Private Game Reserve is not sold to the government for resettlement purposes.

Erindi is up for sale for N$1.3 billion and Nudo is urging the government not to give in to threats or pressure by the owners to expedite the transaction. The owners of the private game reserve, touted to be the largest in southern Africa, announced last month that they are selling the game reserve. “Every Namibian is invited to contribute to this demonstration as this will be an act of keeping our land for Namibian generations to come, rather than allowing our land to fall into the hands of foreigners,” Nudo deputy secretary general, Vetaruhe Kandorozu, said during a media conference held in Windhoek yesterday. Kandorozu also warned that the party will mobilise the masses to boycott the public auction of the game reserve set for April 5, 2014. Kandorozu, who is also the councillor of the Okakarara constituency in the Otjozondjupa Region, said the owners of Erindi Game Reserve should allow the due diligence evaluation process to continue at the pace of the government instead of rushing the process.

“Government must buy the land and hand it over to Namibia Wildlife Resorts to manage it or it must be turned into a small settlement area for Namibians from Botswana who want to return to their motherland,” said Kandorozu.

The deputy secretary general said Erindi is situated on commercial farmland that was taken illegally from the indigenous people. “Many of these people’s parents used to live at Erindi before the German colonial masters drove them into the desert until they ended up in Botswana,” he said. Gert Joubert who co-owns the game reserve with his brother Paul wants to offload the game farm teeming with rhino, elephant, lion, leopard, hippo, eland, hyena and giraffe to serious investors from China. Erindi is also home to crocodile, anteaters and hundreds of bird species and attracts thousands of high-end tourists each year. The Minister of Lands and Resettlement, Alpheus !Naruseb last month said the government was given the first option to buy the reserve and that negotiations pertaining to the sale are underway.


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