July 30, 2020


Namibia issues determination notice to Fonteintjie aquaculture project



Namibia's government has issued a determination notice to a contractor it hired to build the Fonteintjie community aquaculture plant at Keetmanshoop, for allegedly abandoning the project, The Namibian reported.


The term 'determination' in relation to construction contracts means ending the contractor's employment contract.


The inland fisheries and aquaculture director, Rudi Cloete, disclosed the existence of the determination notice to fisheries minister Albert Kawana who recently visited the NAD21-million (US$1.41-million) project.


According to Cloete, the contractor Edison Building Enterprises, abandoned the project two years ago.


The contract included the erection of a fence, several buildings, ponds, water supply infrastructure, water tank stands and the installation of septic tanks and drains.


The facility, whose construction started six years ago, remains incomplete and Cloete said the fisheries ministry has made budgetary provisions to complete the project once the contract determination process is concluded.


According to him, only 20% of the project remains incomplete.


Edison Building Enterprises' director, Edison Kapuuo, earlier blamed the delays on the withholding of payments due to him, claiming he was only paid NAD200,000 of the NAD700,000 invoice for works completed.


Kawana was of the view that the contract between the government and the contractor in question must be terminated.


The minister said inland fisheries has been neglected, saying as new minister of fisheries his focus would be on promoting community aquaculture projects countrywide.


He said fisheries ministry has set aside money for community aquaculture projects, but the projects could not get off the ground due to the COVID-19 pandemic.


"Community aquaculture projects can succeed, and I will be the messiah for that," he remarked, adding that such projects apart from encouraging food security will enable communities to generate income.