Sisulu tells a 'good story' in housing

2016-05-03 19:54
Lindiwe Sisulu (Picture: Die Burger)

Lindiwe Sisulu (Picture: Die Burger)

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Cape Town – More than 100 housing projects around the country have been selected to be "mega projects", worth a combined total of more than R300b.

Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu said on Tuesday these projects were expected to produce 1.5 million housing opportunities.

The minister told Parliament that of the 101 catalytic or mega projects, 94 would be ready for implementation as soon as the paperwork was completed.

Mega housing projects are aimed at fast tracking delivery and accelerating change in apartheid special planning, she said. 

The minister was presenting her budget vote in Parliament, where she sang the praises of her department.

The names of the projects and developers would be announced on Monday, May 9.

Housing for military veterans

The minister also announced that the department had cleared a backlog on housing for military veterans. She said the department had secured 5 600 houses for military veterans, exceeding and clearing the backlog.

On Wednesday, the department would start allocating the houses, matching the database to the province and to the individual, she said.

She apologised to the military veterans for the time it had taken to complete the process.

She boasted about the government’s development in Cosmos City. She said 200 000 people lived in security and comfort in the area.

“We want to say to South Africans, we did it, we are a miracle,” she said. “We have had our successes and we gloat about them. But we have learnt there are places we could do better."

These areas included the beneficiary lists, she said, which would soon be centrally approved in Pretoria instead of in individual provinces.

In a chaotic sitting, filled with MPs shouting at each other and accusing others of falling asleep, the minister outlined the department’s successes.

No serious action

DA MP, Makashule Gana, accused the minister of making promises she could not keep.

“Since your return to the ministry you have made a lot of promises that unfortunately have not been met by any serious action. In July of 2014 you promised to have a credible housing demand database that would help municipalities in the allocation of State subsidised houses.

"You had promised that it would be done within 12 months. It is now two years, we still do not have a credible database that can be trusted by everyone,” he said.

EFF MP Godrich Gardee said the budget did not reflect the needs of the people. “People in Nyanga, Khayelitsha, still live in abject poverty, we are saying our people deserve better,” he said.

He then went on to outline the EFF’s housing manifesto, which promised to abolish squatter camps in five years.

Sisulu said the opposition, who had not taken the time to raise issues of their constituency, had lost the opportunity.

She repeated that the ANC was responsible for providing houses for more than 20 million people.

Read more on:    lindiwe sisulu  |  cape town  |  housing  |  parliament 2016

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