Desperation for housing as Winter approaches

by Makashule Gana MPL – DA Gauteng Spokesperson on Cooperative Governance

During the DA’s oversight inspection to the unfinished RDP housing project this week, we discovered that these houses have also been vandalized with the roofs, ceilings, windows and doors frames removed. The concerned residents claim that those who have illegally invaded these houses are not the rightful beneficiaries and there have been ongoing altercations between these two groups.

Kliptown residents are understandably angry and frustrated, and are demanding that their cries for houses be heard. They claim that they have been on the housing waiting list for years with no communication from the Gauteng Department of Human Settlements in this regard.

Unless the department starts making significant inroads into the million plus housing backlog, illegal occupations will continue and conflict within communities will escalate.

We will continue to put pressure on the MEC to present a plan to ensure that our people no longer have to wait for the dignified housing which they deserve. Come 2019, the people of Gauteng, including the homeless, will experience the Total Change they deserve.

Masina turns RDP hand over into ANC electioneering stunt

ANC Mayoral Candidate, Mzwandile Masina, has brazenly abused state resources by handing over RDP houses in Alra Park, near Nigel in Ekurhuleni, as an ANC campaign event on Monday 18 June 2016.

RDP houses built by the state for beneficiaries should have been handed over by metro officials in Ekurhuleni branding, not the ANC’s mayoral candidate in ANC garb.

The Public Protector has previously ruled that the handing out of food parcels sponsored by the state by the ANC was an abuse of public resources for party political campaigning.

Masina has previously been vicious in his attacks on Public Protector, Thuli Madonsela, and his act of defiance clearly demonstrates that he feels he is above the rule of law.

Masina clearly takes us cue from the man who deployed him as the ANC’s mayoral candidate – Jacbo Zuma.

Masina had the audacity to even post pictures of the handover on his Twitter feed on the 19th of July – as he clearly feels that there will be no consequences for his actions.

To view pictures click here.

It is clear that Masina does not understand the concept of separation of party and state, and like Zuma, will treat citizens money as his own personal bank account if given the chance to occupy the mayor’s office.

As mayor, I would strongly respect the principle of separation of party and state, and govern in the interests of all citizens, unlike the ANC.

Houses and EPWP jobs would not be reserved for ANC members, but open to all regardless of political affiliation.

The DA is the only party that respects the rule of law, the Public Protector and the people of Ekurhuleni. Only the DA can deliver the change that will improve people’s lives in the city.

The DA will be lodging a complaint with the Public Protector to investigate Masina and the ANC for this flagrant abuse of state resources to benefit a political party.

 

Ghaleb Cachalia

DA Mayoral Candidate for Ekurhuleni

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ANC MUST EXPLAIN WHY ONLY 59 OUT OF 150 INFORMAL SETTLEMENTS HAVE BEEN FORMALISED

In 2013, outgoing Mayor Ramokgopa promised in his State of the City Address that “The total eradication of informal settlements remains an important goal of our work during the current term of office. Our citizens deserve places of residence that are fully serviced with title deeds.

And just yesterday, Thoko Didiza, the ANC’s lame duck mayoral candidate, reiterated this promise saying that replacing informal settlements is a priority for the party.

But truth is that since 2013, the number of informal settlements has only grown under the ANC. The ANC must explain their broken promises to formalise informal settlements.

According to City of Tshwane’s 2014-2105 Annual Report, only 59 of the 150 informal settlements identified in 2013 by the City’s “flagship” housing programme, Re Aga Tshwane, have been formalised. This is a mere 39% of the set target.

Since 2013, the number of informal settlements in Tshwane has in fact increased to 178. Among these informal settlements is Plastic view which recently burnt, killing five people and displacing roughly 1 500 residents.

Many informal settlements in Tshwane are without access to basic services such as water, electricity and sanitation.

According to the General Household Survey, Tshwane has the lowest percentage of households with access to a basic sanitation facility at 82% in comparison to 91.4% in Cape Town.

In 2015, Sputla yet again said the City would “accelerate the formalisation process through the Re Aga Tshwane programme”. But just like the rest of his promises, this pledge too lies broken and shattered.

Sputla was correct in saying that the people of the Capital deserve houses with title deeds. But the ANC government in Tshwane has failed to deliver.

Handing over title deeds is about more than giving people ownership of their homes; it is about expanding access to opportunity.

Title deeds allow people to be owners of their property, to have access to equity, to be part of this society and to prosper. Title deeds give people access to opportunity and to ability to improve their lives and the lives of their families.

Earlier this week the DA revealed that corruption and financial mismanagement in the Capital has cost its residents the equivalent of 32,153 RDP houses, while the housing backlog in Tshwane stood at over 120,000 according to the 2014/15 Gauteng Department of Human Settlement’s Annual Performance Plan.

For too long the people of the Capital have been let down by broken ANC promises.

The DA have committed to working hard to ensure that the delivery of title deeds in municipalities we govern is sped up so that more South Africans can own the properties where they live.

Where the DA governs, we are committed to ensuring the fair allocation of housing opportunities, and vitally, coupled with the issuance of title deeds.

In the past three years, the DA-run City of Cape Town has given 15 000 title deeds to make the poor the real owners of their own homes. This is more than any other metro in the country.

This is the change that only the DA can deliver, handing over title deeds as well as greater transparency and accountability in the awarding of RDP. This has been proved in the municipalities we govern.

This is the DA difference; this is the change the DA wants to bring to Tshwane in order to see it move forward again.

Together, on 3 August, we can bring change to Tshwane.

 

Media enquiries:

Motheo Mtimkulu

Media Manager: Tshwane Mayoral Campaign

083 728 0554

Gauteng Needs More Housing And Less Promises

Gauteng Housing Backlog

Gauteng MEC for Human Settlements, Jacob Mamabolo, has proved beyond reasonable doubt that he is failing to deliver on his mandate to handle the Gauteng housing backlog which now surpasses over 1 million.

In his political report for 2015 Gauteng Premier David Makhura, admitted to the shortcomings of the human settlements department in delivering housing opportunities for the residents in the province.

Under Mamobolo’s leadership, the human settlements department has cracked and failed to reach many of its priority targets and policies which include:

  • The non-delivery of RDP houses;
  • Inability to roll out in-situ upgrading programmes; and
  • The failure to consolidate social housing programmes as well as planning of the mega city.

Access to Basic Housing

The number of people living in shacks and informal dwellings has not reduced since 1994 and one in five residents in the City of Johannesburg still live in an informal settlement.

After 21 years of a democratic dispensation, residents in Alexandra, Dube, Diepkloof, Daveyton and Brandvlei to name a few, still struggle to access basic housing.

This is indicative of a disintegrating leadership that is completely out of touch.

Gauteng residents also still await the MEC’s promise to initiate an investigation into the R 2.6 billion in irregular expenditure incurred by his department.

Decent, Sustainable Housing

MEC Mamabolo lacks transparency and fails to be held accountable by the residents of Gauteng, thus corroding the public’s trust and hope for decent and sustainable housing.

The MEC must clean up his act and start exercising decisive leadership that will see the living conditions of the people improve.  It is high time that he deliver on his promised mandate before taking oath of office.

 

Media enquiries:

Mervyn Cirota MPL

DA Gauteng Spokesperson on Human Settlements

060 558 8312

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DA Debates Gauteng 2014/15 Human Settlements Annual Report

Speech by: Fred Nel MPL

“Gauteng housing requires radical makeover”

  • The current format of RDP housing contributes towards urban sprawl and increased infrastructure maintenance costs for municipalities.
  • Currently the department is unable to administer, roll out or effectively monitor its purpose and function as provided for in the Constitution and the Housing Act by providing housing for the poor and the establishment, development and maintenance of economically viable communities.
  • Gauteng requires sound policies implemented in a well-managed and responsible manner, address spatial development inequalities as a result of our past, and promotes economic growth that creates jobs.
  • Gauteng’s rapid urbanisation requires the creation of densified communities, private sector incentives and proper social and economic integration.

The full speech can be obtained here.

 

Speech by: Lebo More MPL

“Non-delivery leaves Gauteng residents destitute”

  • The Department needs to produce the list of beneficiaries of over 50 houses it claims to have built in Sokhulumi. The department’s annual report says that the houses had been built, but when the portfolio committee went there it didn’t see any.
  • The ANC itself admits that: “we promised people in the beginning of the financial year, through annual targets, that we will uplift you – yet we have failed to achieve these promises”.
  • Gauteng’s people need hand-ups and not hand-outs.

The full speech can be obtained here.

 

Media enquiries:

Fred Nel MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs

083 863 2427

 

Lebo More MPL

DA Gauteng Spokesperson on Petitions

072 273 4487

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Sinkhole inside RDP home: DA escalates issue to Gauteng Legislature as EMM fails to assist

A resident living in Etwatwa, Ekurhuleni has been living with a sinkhole in his RDP house for the past five years.

Sphiwe Mokwena, approached the DA after both the previous and current local ANC ward councillor and Ekurhuleni Metro failed to assist him, despite reporting the sinkhole in 2010.

A sinkhole formed in the living room of Sphiwe’s RDP house five years ago, forcing him and his family to move out of their home.

Sphiwe’s family was subsequently forced to rent two shacks – one for his parents and one for the children.

In 2010, the Mokwena family reported this issue to the previous local ANC councillor who gave the family cement to cover the hole but this did not resolve the problem.

Since then the family have not heard from the previous councillor and the current councillor, Masele Madihlaba, have also done nothing to assist the Mokwena family despite this issue being covered in the media last year.

The sinkhole now takes up half of the living room and has caused cracks to form in different parts of the house.

Last September (2014/09/26), the issue was reported in the Daily Sun and Ekurhuleni Metro Spokesperson, Themba Gadebe was quoted in the story saying that the municipality would send officials to assess the sinkhole. He stated: “We are determined to assist the Mokwena family. We don’t want any loss of life.”

Yet, more than a year later, Mr Gadebe has failed to deliver on his promise. Officials have not come to assess the sinkhole and the Mokwena family still live in shacks because their home is unsafe to live in.

It is unacceptable that the Ekurhuleni municipality has failed to address this matter over the past five years.

In my capacity as Springs/Daveyton Constituency Head I will be writing to the Ekurhuleni MMC for Human Settlements, Aubrey Nxumalo and request that he provides answers on the following questions:

  1. Why has the municipality failed to fix this problem since the issue was reported in 2010;
  2. What steps will the municipality take to assist the Mokwena family;
  3. Whether a site and soil review was conducted to ensure that the land was suitable to build on prior to the RDP homes being built; and
  4. Are the surrounding RDP homes also at risk of being affected by a similar problem?

Due to the Ekurhuleni Metro failing to properly address this issue for the past five years, I will also write to the MEC for Human Settlements, Jacob Mamabolo in the Gauteng Provincial Legislature asking his department to investigate this issue as a matter of urgency.

It is crucial that the municipality assist the Mokwena family immediately so that they can move back into their home and that officials who have failed to take action over the past five years are held accountable.

Media Enquiries

Ashor Sarupen MPL

DA Springs-Daveyton Constituency Head

076 334 5147

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