Newly appointed Human Settlements Minister Nomaindia Mfeketo announced government’s ambitious plans of a total revamp of the informal sector of Duncan Village while speaking to the media yesterday.
She said a task team comprising members of local, provincial and national government has been formulated to tackle the lack of adequate housing.
The area had 3500 formal houses and 14000 shacks in 2011, according to reports in the Daily Dispatch.
She said the area was noticed by President Cyril Ramaphosa during his walkabout when the national leaders were in the province for the annual January 8 statement.
“We have come to formalise a decision taken by President Cyril Ramaphosa when he was in town for the January 8th. He instructed us to prioritise development for the people of Duncan Village.
“But the three temporary structures [houses] we handed over are just a short-term measure,” she said.
Before coming to Duncan Village, she visited the Thembelihle-Manyano housing project in NU9, and the Emerald Sky Housing project in Amalinda.
Back in Duncan Village, she said there were a number of people who lived in RDP houses where there are decent roads so “don’t despair because that day will come to you too”.
One of the beneficiaries of yesterday’s temporary structure handover, Nontose Mphiti, 95, said she was excited with the temporary structure.
“I know it is not a brick house, but I am still excited because I never thought I would ever get out of living in a shack,” she said.
Said Mfeketo: “Following the meeting between the three spheres of government, we will table the report to the Cabinet for approval and we will immediately set time frames.
“The first thing will be a visit by the technical committee,” she said.
The minister said after a decision by Cabinet, the quickness of finishing the development would depend on the cooperation of the people of Duncan Village.
This, she said, was due to the fact that people in the area would have to be moved to another area for construction to resume.
She said it was difficult at this stage to say how many people would benefit.
“We are hoping in the shortest possible time after presenting to Cabinet and getting approval, work will start here,” she said. — firstname.lastname@example.org