Govt will continue with its projects despite low budget

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Johannesburg - Government will continue with its projects to help develop the lives of the disadvantaged despite a low budget, says Minister of Human Settlement Tokyo Sexwale.

During a visit to Diepsloot on Monday, Minister Sexwale said that government's budget for this financial year has declined by about R60 billion due to the global economic downturn, which has negatively impacted on government's developmental projects.

However, the minister assured the close-knit community, north of Johannesburg that government will make a plan to ensure that the poor of the poorest are living in proper human conditions.

"We are currently having problems of local and global economic recession which has decreased government's budget by R60 billion which will affect our programmes including human settlement programmes.

"However, with this insufficient budget we will make plans which will guarantee that these people are living in better and appropriate conditions," said the minister, who had set up a makeshift office in the area for queries.

Minister Sexwale spent the night in the informal settlement interacting with people in order to get first hand experience on the living conditions of the people in Diepsloot.

Recently, Diepsloot residents embarked on violent demonstrations after a rumour spread that they were to be relocated to Brits.

However, Minister Sexwale dismissed those rumors clarifying that the 300 families will be relocated to a proper location in Diepsloot while government repairs the broken sewage pipe on which their shacks are built on.

The impoverished residents of Diepsloot, who are residing in inhuman conditions, had a chance to interact with Minister Sexwale and inform him of their concerns.

Minister Sexwale is expected on Tuesday to meet Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe, who heads government's war on poverty project, to inform him of the plight faced by Diepsloot residents.