The Gauteng Provincial Government, together with the provincial Department of Human Settlements, will be handing over title deeds every week, says Gauteng Premier David Makhura.
Speaking to SAnews in Shoshanguve on Thursday, Makhura said as of 1 June, government officials will be handing over title deeds to people in the province in what will be known as “Title deed Friday.”
On Thursday, Makhura and the MEC for Human Settlements, Traditional Affairs and Cooperative Governance, Uhuru Moiloa, visited Soshanguve and Mabopane communities to hand over 20 title deeds as part of the Ntirhisano Outreach Programme.
The Ntirhisano Outreach Programme is a platform for government in the Gauteng City Region to engage with community members and find solutions to their challenges.
To address the backlog of housing in Gauteng, the provincial government has put in place the two programmes, namely the Rapid Land Release and Building Large Scale Mega Human Settlements.
“We have a combination of strategies to address homelessness and landlessness. We think with those two strategies, the Rapid Land Release and Building Large scale Mega Human Settlements, we will be able to resolve the housing backlogs,” he said.
Makhura has put together a team of MECs and mayors who are identifying in different municipalities land parcels from government, municipalities, state owned enterprises, provincial government and national government departments.
“They also need to identify land that we can expropriate without compensation. This is not government land, its privately owned land. The team has met twice and next week they will give me a report. I want to start with the programme in June,” he said.
The recently launched Rapid Land Release programme is aimed at releasing serviced sites to people who can build houses for themselves.
“We can never build enough houses for everybody at one time. Thats why we are making land available for those who can afford to build for themselves,” he said.
Makhura said government has worked very hard since 1994 to make sure that it gives dignity back to people.
“More than four million houses across the country and more than 1.2 million houses in Gauteng alone [have been built].
“We know we have a huge backlog [in housing]… the big problem is that we come across a lot of areas where people have been given houses. They either sell the houses or they rent them out and go back to the shacks,” he said.
Makhura discouraged community members from occupying land illegally and warned that government will act where there is illegal occupation of land.
Beneficiary Lulu Letoaba expressed her happiness for receiving a title deed, saying that her children and grandchildren will inherit her house.
“I hope my children and grandchildren will extend the house because I could not afford to do it,” Letoaba.
She currently stays in a four room house. – SANews.gov.za