Electrification, road upgrade on Council agenda

Gerine Hoff
The City of Windhoek will receive N$15 million from the Ministry of Mines and Energy destined for peri-urban electrification.
The announcement was made during the most recent City Council meeting that took place last Thursday.
In a statement, it was announced that for the 2024/2025 financial year, the ministry committed to providing financial support to co-fund electrification initiatives with the Windhoek municipality.
Over the past five years, the Council has invested in distribution network upgrades to enable electrification in the peri-urban areas around Windhoek. Currently, the Council is working on several upstream upgrades on the Distribution Network such as Babilon and Havana Distribution Stations, which cost the council around N$30 million, and the construction of Lafrenz Load Centre, which cost around N$45 million, to accommodate new electricity connections in the peri-urban areas.
The City said that the electrification projects funded by the ministry would be executed within the 1 April 2024 to 31 March 2025 financial year.
Council is expected to use its internal capacity to efficiently complete the electrification projects, including engineering designs, project management, and procurement of materials where feasible.
The Council will select peri-urban areas for electrification in line with its best practices and prioritization framework, as approved in the five-year Electrification Plan from 2023 to 2028. The final localities for electrification funded by the Ministry will receive final approval from the Minister before implementation.
Ongos road upgrade
In other news, the City Council approved the proposal of Ongos Valley Development (Pty) Ltd to upgrade Winnie Madikizela Mandela Road to a dual carriageway and to enter into a development agreement.
The development will provide an opportunity for the Council to upgrade its current road infrastructure to accommodate the anticipated increase in traffic flow demands.
By converting Winnie Madikizela-Mandela Road into a dual carriageway (including tie-in sections on adjacent streets), the developer aims to alleviate current traffic congestion, enhance connectivity, and create a safer environment for the residents of Windhoek and visitors.
All households located within the road reserve of Winnie Madikizela-Mandela Road will be relocated as per the standing arrangement in the existing Memorandum of Agreement and Addendum to the signed development agreement.
Additionally, the developer will work closely with the Council to assist in engaging with the affected communities through the process of stakeholders’ engagement. The developer will also support the Council to ensure that a grievance mechanism is established as early as possible in the project development phase. This will allow the developer to receive and address specific concerns about relocation raised by displaced individuals promptly.
The developer will be responsible for all financial and technical risks associated with this project, and the Council will not bear any financial liability.