'We still don't have homes' - Military veterans

2017-05-03 20:54
Lindiwe Sisulu (GCIS)

Lindiwe Sisulu (GCIS)

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Johannesburg - Members of the ANC's military wing Umkhonto we Sizwe and the Azanian People's Liberation Army have once again accused the government of neglecting their needs.

"Some of you go home to your beautiful homes and are eating while the rest of us suffer," teary former combatant Charmaine Skweyiya said during a discussion with Housing Minister Lindiwe Sisulu and Deputy Minister of Military Veterans Kebby Maphatsoe on Wednesday.

The veterans expressed concerns about being made to feel like a burden to government, instead of heroes of the struggle.

"We trusted you. We elected you so you could stand for us. We still don't have homes. We are being laughed at by children at the department of military veterans," Skweyiya said.

The former combatant, who ran off to join the struggle at age 16, told News24 that it was painful to see many of those who had sacrificed their lives for the country's democracy being homeless and jobless.

"We put our trust in them when we returned, but today they have failed us," she said.


Veterans said families of combatants who had died during the struggle, or more recently, were not getting enough support.

"The urgent issue also has to be children who were left behind," APLA national executive committee member Lucky Maarman said.

Maphatsoe called on former combatants to make sure that lists of people waiting for houses were up to date.

"The least we want from you is that you submit a correct list. Don't submit a name of someone who has passed on. We will arrest you and charge you," he said.

He urged those in attendance to help find solutions, instead of complaining about their problems.

Sisulu promised to address people's housing troubles. She undertook to pay off the bonds for those with homes on the brink of being repossessed by banks.

"By the time you go to bed tonight, that house will be yours," she told one man.

"The biggest problem we've had is our database, but we are now able to move forward. This means in the shortest possible time we would be able to give you houses and shelter in the way that you wanted us to.

"Indeed government does have a lot of disused houses," she said.

Her department will approach Cabinet to ask for houses which belonged to former police officers and teachers, and were no longer in use.


Read more on:    anc  |  mkmva  |  lindiwe sisulu  |  kebby maphatsoe  |  johannesburg  |  service delivery  |  housing

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