Mchunu calls for eradication of slums in KwaZulu-Natal, including Jika Joe

2013-07-29 00:00

KWAZULU-NATAL ANC chairperson Senzo Mchunu wants the province’s slums, including the Jika Joe settlement in Pietermaritzburg, era­dicated.

Speaking at a three-day ANC summit in Durban on Saturday, Mchunu said the democratic revolution was about liberating people from things such as slums.

“I think in a summit like this we must come to life and not theorise too much,” he said, referring to the need to come up with solutions to tackle the issue of slum dwelling.

The summit, attended by ANC members from various regions and top brass in provincial government, ends today. Delegates will be taking stock of work done by the ANC-led KZN government since 2009.

In his address, Mchunu told of his shock when he learnt that R60 million was handed over by the national Human Settlements Department to eradicate the Jika Joe settlement.

“We were given R60 million to clear that slum, not R600 000, but today the slum is still there,” he said.

Mchunu said the continued existence of slums posed a different type of problem that was not necessarily related to money.

In his view, the blame for the existence of slums was not always put on the department or the municipality, but the ANC was perceived as not doing anything different to change the lives of people.

“The buck stops with the ANC, so can we at least eliminate one slum, the Jika Joe, even others?” he asked.

He called for the eradication of social ills such as rape, murder, teenage pregnancy, substance abuse and liquor abuse, which were on the rise.

“I mention this because we have sought to say our election campaign has to be underpinned by a certain level of consciousness.

“It is not nice to go to a village or home to find a child has been raped and the suspect has not been arrested, and all we are interested in is that we want support for next year. We can’t take that approach.”

Mchunu said KZN should play its part in ensuring that the resolutions taken in Mangaung on economic empowerment and decisive action in the second phase of transformation were implemented and Vision 2030 was embraced.

“We must be seen to be making progress in implementing those resolutions at this level as a province. We can’t wait for another conference to make an assessment,” he said.

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