BY: Rodney Pienaar
Poverty minister, Zephania Kameeta said that Food Bank beneficiaries will be introduced to income generating programs in order to graduate from food handouts and generate income to sustain themselves.
The concept of the Food Bank does not only consist of food handouts but will be re-engineered to include special case management and graduation model programs, he said.
“We are not handing out food to make our people lazy like some people are saying. We do this with and intention to have them off the street. We do not want them to work on empty stomachs because they will not be able to concentrate.”
“We have worked tirelessly to make sure that every person has food on the table before they go out with their ideas to start their business. What I am saying is eventually a beneficiary will move forward once they have concrete income either from their business or from employment,” he said.
Kameeta also said that as part of the resolutions of the second land conference, government offices, ministries and agencies were urged to procure local products in order to empower Namibians to sustain themselves.
“The ministry in this regard engaged stakeholders such as the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry, AMTA, AGRIBUSDEV, NNFU and NAB, to strategise on how to address this objective. At the moment, the Ministry has engaged AGRIBUSDEV in the supply of maize meal, we are also engaging our suppliers of food parcels to include locally manufactured or packed food items.”
“When local produce is bought directly that is the way we are empowering our nation to be self-sustainable. We need to pull together as a country in one direction in order to make sure that we achieved what we really aim for. This is an opportunity for the farmers in the north to start generating income for themselves,” he said.