At a Build-Together committee meeting held at the Keetmanshoop Municipal Chambers on Wednesday evening, contractors said they are running behind schedule because there are no bricks, cement and corrugated iron sheets available.
The meeting brought together contractors, beneficiaries and the committee members to look at the progress and challenges facing the construction of 273 houses.
Each of the first group of four contractors – Goosies Construction and Renovation, Vivid Properties, Josef Berndt Renovations and Ekuma Construction – are expected to complete 25 houses in a period of four months to achieve the first target of 100 houses.
All contractors started building on 11 February 2013, but none of them have completed a single house yet, while they were expected to complete at least six houses per month.
“When we go to collect material at the municipality, we do not get them. There is always an excuse for it,” charged one contractor, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
The materials are ordered and paid for by the Ministry of Regional and Local Government, Housing and Rural Development (MRLGHRD), through the local authority from local suppliers such as Dynamic Steel, Pupkewitz Megabuild and Super Sand.
Approached for comment, Keetmanshoop Municipality Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and chairperson of the Build-Together committee, Paul Vleermuis, did not provide a reason for the delay, only saying the problem will be dealt with as from Thursday this week.
New contractors will be selected to construct the remaining 173 houses, as soon as the first 100 houses are completed.
The whole project is worth N.dollars 4 million.
It was also revealed at the same meeting that there are already 300 applications for Build-Together houses this year.
Vleermuis noted that there is no money to build more houses, but the municipality will forward a request to the line ministry to avail more funds.
“This request will be send to the ministry before 01 April 2013. Then, we see if we will get funds to build more houses for the people,” explained the CEO.