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Erongo residents to get emergency grant payout priority

The finance ministry said they will prioritise payment to residents of Erongo region because they are now in lockdown.

President Hage Geingob announced Monday that the Erongo region was going under lockdown because those in Walvis Bay did not adhere to the one-week lockdown and because the region had recorded 8 cases so far.

The move triggered questions on whether the finance ministry would unveil another package to help since most people will not be economically active.

Finance ministry’s spokesperson, Tonateni Shidudu, said there are some residents in Erongo that have not yet received their grants due to some reasons especially those that were verified at the regional council.

“We are currently capturing the date for the forms that we have received from all 14 regions. So, what we are going to do is to priorities the Erongo region to make sure that those that have not received will receive their grants this week,” he said.

The government, Shidhudhu explained, does not have so much money and was equally taking care of other affected sectors of the economy.

“We are all aware that the President has announced the extension of the lockdown period in the Erongo region. It started with the residents of Walvis Bay but it has now been extended and this is in an effort to curb the further spread of the Covid-19,” Shidhudhu said.

According to Shidhudhu, there have been inquiries from members of the public about the possible additional grant or emergency income grant to the residents of Walvis bay in particular.

“Here, I would like to clarify that there is no plan to provide an extra grant to the people of Walvis Bay.
The emergency income grant was a once-off payment based on the first three-week period,” he said.

Shidhudhu also said the government was already spending a lot of money in responding to the effects of Covid-19 and giving an extra grant will give extra pressure to the fiscus as there are more pressing needs during this time.

“We understand the effects that lockdown has on the informal sector but we should also take note that the government is responding in many different ways to address the plight of the people,” he added.

Shidhudhu said there is food aid being rolled out in regions and support to public entities, there the grant to individuals should not be seen as the only relief.

“Our people are being taken care of by the government in many ways,” he said.


Julia Heita

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