Mixed feelings over project

2019-03-26 06:00

A community leader in Masiphumelele says a lot can be done to fast track the Masiphumelele Phase 4 housing project.

The project comprises 227 Breaking New Ground (BNG) State-subsidised houses for qualifying beneficiaries from the Masiphumelele wetlands informal settlement and Masiphumelele backyarders.

Tshepo Moletsana, community leader, says there are too many technical and administration delays on the project. These, he says, have led to a lot of frustrations for the beneficiaries. Moletsana was speaking to People’s Post following a visit by Mayor Dan Plato and Mayco member for human settlements, Malusi Booi, to the project. The pair visited the area to check progress on the project and to engage the community on Saturday 16 March.

According to City officials the R85m phase 4 housing project was progressing well.

Booi said it is very exciting to see that the project is progressing well and that work is on track. “The contractors have started to lay the foundations and build the top structures. This means qualifying beneficiaries will be one step closer to receiving their new homes. As with all of our projects, we are absolutely dependent on community support and cooperation. There are many challenges in Masiphumelele, but only with the support of the community will we be able to improve the living conditions of our residents. There is much work to be done in Masiphumelele and, where we are able to enhance basic service delivery, we are doing everything possible,” he said.

The City of Cape Town’s Human Settlements Directorate is working with the elected People’s Housing Process (PHP) Support Organisation on the project. Although some progress has been made, Moletsana says that is not enough. “People don’t really see this as progress. For them they want to see the structures go up, then they will have hope. It can be a top structure for long and that doesn’t sit well with the beneficiaries. They want to see work,” he says.

The expenditure on this project amounts to R85m and includes money allocated for the bulk earthworks; internal civil engineering services for the provision of water, sanitation and roads; electricity reticulation; and street lighting.

Plato said the City’s Human Settlements Directorate is aware of the housing needs in the city and the impact this (need for houses) has on the lives of people. “Councillor Booi and I, therefore, engaged with the community as part of ongoing engagements, to listen to their concerns first-hand and to reassure them that we are committed to providing housing opportunities and the enhancement of basic services where possible,” he said.

Moletsana added that they appreciate the fact that the City is engaging them, but what is crucial for a project of this magnitude is proper flow of information and clear explanations.

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