By Victor Angula /
In order for Namibia to overcome the ever growing national debt, fiscal responsibility should be a moral imperative for all stakeholders entrusted with public funds, as they have a duty to the people to ensure that borrowed money is wisely spent and for intended purposes.
This is the belief of Lukas Nghidipohamba Hamata.
Hamata, who on Tuesday gave his maiden speech in the National Assembly, became a member of the law-making chamber a month ago.
“Otherwise, do not borrow that money as it will be a huge burden for our children and their children,” Hamata said to fellow law-makers most of whom were older and more experienced than him.
“The type of future we craft for our children depends wholly on how we manage the economy today.
“I for one do not want our children to be saddled with huge debt burdens of repaying debt that was accumulated as a result of borrowing and spending recklessly on useless and unproductive projects that yield no sustainable return for our economy.
“We must use debt to develop new and exciting industries to create the high-paid jobs and business opportunities that we want for our children and the global capabilities that we want for our country.”
Hamata’s greatest frustration is that despite 32 years of alleged sustained economic growth, Namibia remains in debt and budget deficit.
“The oil storage facility in the Erongo Region has cost the Namibian taxpayer over N$7 billion, but years later since its inception, average Namibians are yet to reap the benefits of this costly project as fuel prices continue to increase on regular basis in par with global markets, but one was made to believe that the storage facility will be used to secure bulk fuel for Namibia that will ensure stable fuel prices for a considerable period of time, which has proven to be a white elephant that has contributed massively to our national debt.
“I implore the colleagues in charge of our treasury to take to heart the advice of our Chief Whip, Honourable Vipuakuje Muharukua who passionately speaks to young Namibians about good and bad debt.
“It appears that this advice will be useful to the people who manage our treasury.”
Describing himself as an economic ‘hardhead’ who was born and raised in Ohangwena Region, Hamata said that Namibia is faced with numerous contemporary social issues, some more pressing and time sensitive than others, but he will focus his time in parliament on contemporary social issues such as: Lack of housing, Poor healthcare system, Access to education, Youth unemployment, Global warming, Lack of service delivery in rural areas, Poor infrastructure, Food insecurity, Digital literacy and Corporate governance.
“I want to remind this August House and the Namibian populace in general that the Popular Democratic Movement’s motivating purpose is not fighting against ideologies and individuals with different views; it is fighting for the Namibian people.
“Socio-economic freedom demands individual responsibility, it requires all individuals to make themselves deserving of the freedoms bestowed upon them.
“Honourable Speaker, society is at its best when government, business and communities work together for the best possible outcomes. As politicians we have our limitations but, as individuals, we are limitless.
“A well-articulated socio-economic policy, focused on empowerment, not dependence, can re-orient us towards our best selves and reaching our developmental goals.”
“In conclusion,” the young MP said, “I want to pledge my commitment to the ideals of our Constitution and all that it stands for as far as promoting an equitable society is concerned. The fight for equality and economic independence has just begun.”
In the photo: Member of the National Assembly Mr Hidipo Hamata.