In Keetmanshoop, the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Land Reform has recently acquired approximately 19,000 hectares of land in the ||Kharas region for the second phase of the Neckartal Dam project. This acquisition, at a cost of nearly N$19 million, marks a significant step in the dam’s development. The first phase involved constructing the dam wall, completed in 2019 by Italian company Salini Impregilo, with a total expenditure of N$5.5 billion. The upcoming second phase focuses on developing irrigation projects anticipated to generate substantial employment opportunities.
According to Namibian Press Agency (NAMPA), Jona Musheko, a request for expressions of interest was advertised in November for consulting services to conduct a feasibility study. This study aims to guide the ministry in selecting suitable crops or fruits for cultivation and in determining effective design, financing, and operational models. Musheko could not specify the consultation period’s duration before launching the irrigation scheme’s development. ||Kharas Governor Aletha Frederick has expressed hopes that the government will integrate small farmers into the irrigation phase, emphasizing the importance of benefiting local communities, especially women and youth, through cooperative models.