The Namibian government has established an implementation and monitoring committee to scrutinise all applications for the establishment and expansion of abattoirs. The request came from the Government Institutions Pension Fund (GIPF) after the new ostrich abbatoir at Keet-manshoop, Ostrich production Namibia, incurred losses to the tune of N$21 million (US$3.35million).

Despite the heavy financial burden placed on the government’s pension fund by investments in loss-making ventures such as the OPN abbatoir, the facility was again bank rolled with N$23 million to upgrade it to a multi purpose abattoir, slaughtering ostrich, game and small stock.

Deputy Minister of Information and Broadcasting Gabes Shihepo stated: ‘The government would consider regulating slaughter capacities, because the public’s interest is at stake. Firstly, funds of the Government Institutions Pensions Fund are affected and also to some extent the consumers are paying for the cost of creating over-capacity or losses incurred when abattoirs are closed.’

According to Shihepo, the current slaughtering capacity of 1,220,000 animals per annum equals the annual production of 1,221,417 head of stock, including goats.

Shihepo also told the media that goats were not yet slaughtered in Namibia, adding that there was an over-capacity in terms of small stock slaughtered in Namibia.