Education minister, Anna Nghipondoka, has hit back at allegations that she squeezed herself onto land (farm Meyerton) owned by the Haiǁom community in the Kunene region.
The minister has told Eagle FM that, to the contrary, it’s them that have grabbed part of her land.
Seven members of the Haiǁom community are up in arms in court over a civil case in which they claim that farm Meyerton in Kunene has been taken over by politically exposed persons.
But Nghipondoka has come out to say that back in 2003 she had no political connections.
“And please record it clearly that I have a camp that is illegally taken by the people whom you are talking about. If they are the ones. I believe they are the people who are to my east.
“They took that camp on their own, I did not chase them out. I did not go to court. I was trying to handle the issue professionally through the ministry of land reform. And I am still waiting for them, to go back to the farm and say look, these are the coordinates, this is how the plots were allocated, this is allocated to Nghipondoka,” she said.
Meyerton is a resettlement farm.
Documents seen by Eagle FM shows that Nghipondoka got her portion after applying to the lands ministry as a landless person back in 2003 when former president Hifikepunye Pohamba was lands minister.
It was also the same time her ex-husband was a deputy director at the lands ministry.
But the minister has flatly denied that she got the land due to her marital connection
The same point has been made by lands ministerial spokesperson, Chrispine Matongela, when Eagle FM visited his office Monday morning.
“To start with, I qualified to apply for land as a previously disadvantaged woman who was landless that time. Secondly, when I applied, I didn’t apply to Nghipondoka (ex-husband). I applied to the lands ministry and my application followed all the procedures that are followed up to the minister’s office where it was approved ultimately.
“Nghipondoka didn’t have powers to approve applications for land. So that allegation I will not prove it to be correct because I know I have my right, I applied myself.
“Nobody applied for me. I took my applications to the office myself and procedures were followed like any other application and I was allocated land,” she said.
Whereas the San have also stated that they have been pushed away from land where their graves are, Matongela said this could be because there is confusion on boundaries between the portions of farms.