DA pats itself on back on housing for military vets

2017-05-05 16:27
MK soldiers. (File, Gallo)

MK soldiers. (File, Gallo)

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Cape Town - After military veterans complained earlier this week that the government neglects their needs, the Democratic Alliance responded that housing for military veterans is a priority for the DA-led Western Cape government.

"This has already been proven, because the Western Cape is the first and only province to provide housing to military vets," said Matlhodi Maseko, DA MPP in the Western Cape parliament and spokesperson for human settlements.

"In March this year, the department handed over 10 houses to military veterans. This is the first of 73 residential units that have been constructed as part of its Eerste River Military Veterans Housing Project since last year."

According to Maseko, an estimated 500 of the approximately 6 000 military veterans across the country reside in the Western Cape.

The province's current Military Veteran Housing project continues in Blue Downs, Nuwe Begin and Kuilsrivier, and will house approximately 250 families.

"It is vital that we do not pay lip service about how important it is to recognise the sacrifices and contributions these veterans have made to the freedom and safety of our nation," said Maseko.

Promises

Veterans of the ANC's military wing Umkhonto we Sizwe and the Azanian People's Liberation Army expressed concerns about being made to feel like a burden to the government, instead of heroes of the struggle during a discussion with Housing Minister Lindiwe Sisulu and Deputy Minister of Military Veterans Kebby Maphatsoe in Johannesburg on Wednesday.

Veterans said families of combatants who had died during the struggle, or more recently, were not getting enough support, reported News24.

Maphatsoe called on former combatants to make sure that lists of people waiting for houses were up to date and urged those in attendance to help find solutions, instead of complaining about their problems.

Sisulu promised to address people's housing troubles. She undertook to pay off the bonds for those with homes on the brink of being repossessed by banks and said her department would approach Cabinet to ask for houses which belonged to former police officers and teachers and were no longer in use.

Maseko was not surprised about the veterans' complaints.

"It is truly unfortunate, but the reality is that the ANC is well known for making empty promises and the party does not have the ability or know-how to follow-through on them," Maseko said.

"Furthermore to expect these veterans to ensure that the housing waiting list is up to date is disingenuous. How has the department not ensured that the list is up to date since 1994?

"This clearly shows that the ANC does not know who their own veterans are. This trend will persist, because the ANC continues to have inept, incapable and unqualified individuals at the helm of its portfolios."

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  housing

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