Gauteng housing: Minister Sisulu intervenes

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Pretoria - Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu will on Sunday lead a government delegation to meet with the representatives of the communities of the south of Johannesburg. 

The area, including Eldorado Park, Ennerdale, Fine Town and surrounds, has been gripped by protests, mainly over the delivery of houses to residents. 

The meeting on Sunday is one of many interventions by government to resolve the protests and find a way forward. 

A meeting has already been held with the representatives of the communities and parties agreed to report back in the next 10 days. 

While the communities requested that the Minister intervene, they also want assistance with the problems faced by backyard dwellers, which the department views as a historic common problem affecting people who reside in the established communities. 

Communities want the slow pace of upgrading of informal settlements to be addressed. A major point of contention for communities remains the issue of houses being allocated to people who come from outside the area, meaning that people who have been on the waiting list for a long time are bypassed. 

An urgent meeting will be held today with Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Des van Rooyen, MEC for Human Settlements Paul Mashatile and the Executive Mayors of both the City of Johannesburg and Tshwane respectively. 

“Officials from all the affected departments and metros have been instructed to craft a long lasting response to the housing challenges in these areas. These will be presented to the Ministers so that they are converted into programmes of government and are budgeted for,” said the Ministry of Human Settlements on Thursday. 

Minister Sisulu has reiterated that government is serious about resolving the issues raised by the communities. She called for calm until a common ground is found. –

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