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There is a need for a fully-fledged NATIS office at Okongo in the Ohangwena Region to allow people access to services close to them.

This was highlighted by the Okongo Village Council Chief Executive Officer during a meeting with the Deputy Minister of Works and Transport, Veikko Nekundi.

NATIS Okongo opened its doors in 2021 but with limited office space and services.

Currently, the facility only offers eye testing, learner's license, driver's license renewal, vehicle registration, and de-registration of vehicles.

It also offers special and temporary permits, while roadworthiness tests and police clearance are done at Eenhana, about 100 kilometres away.

The office is currently run by a license officer and a supervisor, while the positions of administrator, record verifier, and examiner are vacant.

Okongo NATIS Supervisor Petrina Kayofa says the office's revenue has increased, but human capital remains a challenge.

“Since NATIS is under the village council, when people are here for not even a month, they are already searching for a greener pasture due to the salary scale. When they come here and compare where they are standing, they go faster, resigning and leaving the office empty. I think we have to look at a way to accommodate staff to be comfortable with the registering authority for Okongo.”

Due to a lack of space, learners take their lessons in a tiny room with only a capacity of ten people.

“When you look at the growth, we are forced to use the boardroom. When you came in, you saw some chairs outside. We requested two more chairs and tables for us to be able to use the boardroom to cater for learners' licenses.”

Works and Transport Deputy Minister Veikko Nekundi commended the staff at Okongo NATIS for providing much-needed services to the masses despite the numerous challenges they face.

“We took note of the challenges you are experiencing. We will engage with our agencies, local authorities, and NATIS headquarters. We will possibly dispatch a team in whatever format we are able to put up. We engage at all the technical levels as policymakers. We understand. We will engage with the colleagues to see if there is room for amendments in terms of the challenges, the needs you expressed there, and so forth.”

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NBC Digital News

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Tonateni Haimbodi