RUNDU – Since the Rundu Town Council announced the gift of erven to Namibia’s two trailblazing athletes, Christine Mboma and Beatrice Masilingi last year, the process of registering the plots in their names has seemingly not gotten out of the starting blocks.
On 22 July last year, MTC pledged to build houses valued at N$300 000 each for athletes Mboma and Masilingi at their home villages as part of a lucrative sponsorship deal.
However, both opted for their houses to be built in Rundu since the town council donated two plots to them.
However, the athletes are still waiting to see movement in that regard.
MTC says they are yet to appoint a contractor.
“We acknowledge the delay in respect to the construction of the two houses. We recently finalised our expression of interest and we are awarding the tender to contractors in the weeks to come,” said MTC’s John Ekongo.
The athletes had a sterling year setting the 400 metres alight before being banned from the event by World Athletics for “naturally high testosterone levels”. The 18-year olds instead competed in the 200m at the Tokyo Olympics, with Mboma setting an U/20 world record of 21.81 to win silver - Namibia’s first Olympic medal since Atlanta 1996. Masilingi recorded a personal best of 22.28 to finish sixth. Mboma became the 200m Diamond League champion and U/20 world gold medallist.
This year, Mboma was voted the BBC African Sports Personality of the Year for 2021, becoming the first woman to win the accolade.
The athletes’ achievements evoked an outpouring of generosity from the corporate and public sector that saw them and their coach Henk Botha receiving many gifts and pledges.
Yesterday, New Era spoke to Mboma who said she was looking forward to having her own house but said although the Rundu Town Council handed over two residential plots to her and Masilingi, they have not yet received any documentation that would symbolise their ownership of the plots where MTC will construct their houses.
Without the property title of the plots, this could delay the construction of their houses. “We didn’t receive any title deeds yet,” she noted.
“I’m looking forward to my house,” she continued. New Era could not get hold of Masilingi for comment.
“We gave the directive to staff to arrange their title deeds, I will follow up tomorrow as council will commence and see how far they have gone. Our wish is for them to get title deeds so that their houses can be built,” said Rundu mayor, Gabriel Kanyanga.