‘End to slums, bucket system’

2014-03-06 00:00

ERADICATION of slums and the bucket toilet systems will form part of key priorities of the provincial government over the next five years, Premier Senzo Mchunu said yesterday.

Delivering his State of the Province address, Mchunu said plans were in place to put a stop to the creation of informal settlements.

“We need each municipality to develop a plan on slum-elimination with clear time frames,” he said.

The premier added that there would be an audit on the ownership of low-cost houses to do away with the sale and renting out of these houses, and any other form of fraud and corruption.

He said the provincial government had taken a decision to eradicate the bucket system by March 2014 in eThekwini and the Harry Gwala District Municipality.

“We take the view that the bucket system of sanitation is degrading and indecent and therefore it must be eradicated as a matter of urgency,” he said.

Mchunu said the province will establish agri-villages for people residing on farms with the assistance of the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform.

“This will allow such rural communities access to government services such as better education, healthcare facilities, decent housing and others.”

In a speech occasionally punctuated with the ANC’s election theme of “we have a good story to tell”, Mchunu said the province was stable, peaceful and fast developing.

“Indeed [it is] better than it has ever been since 1994 when the new democratic dispensation replaced the old undemocratic, apartheid-designed system in South Africa.”

Much still needed to be done to make the province vibrant and prosperous for all the sectors of society, he said.

“KwaZulu-Natal is indeed a much better society than it was before 1994 when we inherited a province that was morally and financially challenged.”

The premier also said the province has progressed in peace, security and political tolerance since 1994. “It is pleasing to see that KwaZulu-Natal, a province that was once engulfed by political intolerance and violence, is now at peace with itself.

“We do, however, note the recent incidents of political intolerance, especially in kwaMashu and other recent incidents in the taxi industry. We are also particularly concerned about the recent horrific incidents at Richmond,” he added.

Mchunu listed a number of successes by the provincial government with various periods for each provided.

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