Residents fear mud houses may collapse in wait for municipal homes

2017-10-30 13:45
One of the mud houses in the area that are near collapsing.

One of the mud houses in the area that are near collapsing. (Nokuthula Khanyile)

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Soil and mud tumbling down into the back of people’s homes and water seeping through walls and floors are what residents of mud houses in Ward 21 in Edendale are experiencing.

This despite an allocation of R15 million by Msunduzi Municipality for land acquisition in the 2017/18 annual budget for the Greater Edendale Vulindlela Development Initiative (GEVDI). Residents hoped this money would buy land for settlement development but now fear this may never happen, after high placed sources allege that the municipality now denies knowledge of that money.

According to the annual budget, a further R15,7 million and R16,5 million were allocated for the 2018/19 and 2019/20 financial terms, respectively.

Some residents who are set to benefit from the project told The Witness they were afraid that their houses in Dambuza would collapse and they would be killed or even injured.

Sizakele Hadebe (75) said she has been waiting for years for an RDP house.

Hadebe lives in one of the houses that appears on the verge of collapsing. She said she feared for the safety of her grandchildren as she is unable to walk.

“I have been bedridden for five years and I cannot walk or move without assistance. What will happen on the day that this house collapses? How will I save my grandchildren?” Hadebe asked.

About 95% of the mud homes in the area are in a dilapidated state.

“I have been waiting since 1996 and might never see a house. Where I am staying my children are suffering. When it is raining they are forced to stand on the beds to keep their feet dry,” said the elderly woman. “My youngest grandson was recently treated for tuberculosis. We cannot continue living like this. We want to have a better house one day.”

Another resident, Thokozile Mtshali, said they were told in May that the budget to buy land had been approved by the municipality.

“We want the municipality to tell us where that money has gone to. Why are they not implementing the project because the money is there. Our houses cannot be built without the land,” Mtshali said.

Ward councillor Mntuza Mkhize acknowledged that there was money allocated to the project. “I can confirm that those funds were allocated to the GEVDI. At this stage I can’t say what the status of the project is because I am also waiting for the municipality to say when the project will begin.”

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg

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