Hillview RDP houses in Gingindlovu, near Eshowe are poorly built. (Amanda Khoza, News24).
Eshowe – Cracking walls, leaking roofs and problematic sewage systems are just some of the things that irk a Hillview community in Ward 18 in Gingindlovu.
Community members on Sunday told News24 that they were not happy with the newly-built RDP houses, situated just outside Eshowe.
Zodwa Mdletshe, an unemployed mother of three, said she moved in when the houses were handed over to the poor three years ago.
"The walls are cracking, our roofs are leaking and the sewage pipes are a problem. We have reported the problem to the councillor but nothing has happened. The houses are also too small to accommodate our big families."
She said about 70 families lived in the small community.
"There is no employment, all my children have completed matric but they cannot find jobs and I don’t have money to take them to universities."
Despite all the challenges, Mdletshe said she would go out and vote for the Inkatha Freedom Party on August 3.
Down the road from Mdletshe was Nokuthula Mbuyazi, 32.
She lives in a two-bedroom house with her five children and her partner.
"When it rains, water comes into the house. There was shoddy workmanship when they built these houses and you can see that they were rushed," said Mbuyazi.
Inside Mbuyazi’s sparsely furnished home was an absent ceiling board, while the floors were not tiled and the walls were not painted.
In her bathroom, the top of her sink was sitting on the floor and the water pipes were exposed. This she said, according to the municipality, was to assist if ever they [community members] wanted to change features in their houses.
"Yes we are poor, but we don’t deserve houses that are falling apart," she said.
Mbuyazi said people were moved into Hillview from informal settlements and other surrounding areas.
She said most of the people in the small community were unemployed.
"We survive by the grant that we get from my three children, the two older ones don’t get a grant anymore," she said.
Mpume Gumede, 41, who lives at house number 852, said there were other issues plaguing the community.
"It’s not that we don’t want to work, there is just no work in the area. I do washing in the community and I earn about R700 but I have to send R600 to my child who is schooling in Stanger," she said pointing at a pile of clothes neatly stacked on her sofa.
She said while the rate of teenage pregnancy was not high in the area, most youngsters were smoking cigarettes and drinking alcohol.
"My 13-year-old is already having sex. I always sit her down and tell her about HIV/Aids and falling pregnant, but these children do not listen," said the mother of four.
Gumede said the votes in the area were split between the ANC and the IFP.
"The problem here is also corruption, there are people who own RDPs but they are renting them out to other people for R600 per room, that is not right," she said.
- Find everything you need to know about the 2016 Local Government Elections at our News24 Elections site, including the latest news and detailed, interactive maps for how South Africa has voted over the past 3 elections, or download the app for iOS and Android.