The ANC and the EFF launched attack after attack on Cape Town Mayor Dan Plato over the city’s housing policy during a session of the parliamentary portfolio committee on co-operative government on Friday night. However, they must eventually admit that the policy is actually good and that Plato cares for the city’s poor people.
In a thorough presentation, Cape Town officials presented plans that are currently in the implementation phase for affordable housing in Atlantis, Mitchells Plain, Belhar, Delft, Didovallei, Greenville, Gugulethu, Harare, Macassar, Maroela South (Kraaifontein), Morkel’s Cottage and Somorkel’s Cottage. -Wes.
Nearly 30 housing projects are up for tender with the three largest at Symphony Way, Maroela North and Sir Lowry ‘Pass.
All open land that the city still owns in Belhar and Athlone is currently being developed, as well as low-cost housing in Langa, Gugulethu, Nyanga, Salt River, Woodstock and Parow.
In addition, the Western Cape government is working on housing developments in Belhar, Conradie (Pinelands), Forest Village, Ithemba, Khayelitsha, Woodlands (Mitchells Plain), Penhill, Woodstock, Dunoon and Kosovo and further housing developments have begun in Didovallei, Macassar, Symphony Way, Maroela, Sir Lowry’s Pass, Bonteheuwel, Elsies River, Mitchells Plain, Masiphumelele and Pooke’s Forest.
There is also a mixed cost development going on in Plattekloof in the northern urban areas.
Unfortunately, the decrease of R84 million in the city’s housing budget means that some of the projects are delayed, especially because maintenance of existing housing cannot be neglected. Especially the replacement of window frames that rust and the replacement of sewer systems are high on the agenda.
Cape Town has 464 different informal settlements (squatter camps), each with its own economic and social dynamics. This means each development plan is unique and the result of negotiations with the community.
The three largest squatter camps are all southeast of the city, namely Monwabisi, Sweethomes and Enkanini.
Kaapstad Project unique to Cape Town is this one for backyard residents: The city council gives these residents a tap, an electricity point and a dish.
During Question Time, the EFF in particular inquired about outdated infrastructure in townships.
Bheki Hadebe, ANC MP, who lives in Cape Town and served on the city council for a long time, asked about evictions and long waiting lists.
Hlengiwe Mkhaliphi, EFF MP, asked about the city council’s feeling about the court case that the city lost and that bans evictions. She also wanted to know if Plato was already in touch with the man who had been removed naked from his squatter hut and if enough women were empowered by the city council’s housing projects.
To Hadebe, Plato provided the figures he requested and then explained that these are precisely the areas set aside for housing development that are often targeted by land occupiers.
Plato spoke about the unhappiness in Hangberg, ŉ part of Hout Bay – the area referred to in the court ruling. There are four land occupiers who may not be removed now resulting in dozens of families not being able to get homes.
Plato also pointed out that it was the very Hadebe who contacted the city council this week to remove stickers from land earmarked for development in Khayelitsha.
Hadebe said it was necessary because thousands of people’s housing opportunities could not be withheld because a few people wanted to paste.
Plato pointed out that this is exactly his point, but the ANC and EFF encourage precisely such occupations.
He told Mkhaliphi he had already requested a conversation with the man who was removed naked from his hut, but he could not force it and the man did not feel like talking.
He also released figures on women’s empowerment, which far exceeded the guideline. The meeting adjourned peacefully.