25 August 2022
HUMAN SETTLEMENTS TO FAST-TRACK INTERVENTIONS FOR OR TAMBO DISASTER-HIT COMMUNITIES
Human Settlements Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi has outlined plans to speed up and strengthen the response to disaster and other human settlements development challenges in the OR Tambo District Municipality in the Eastern Cape.
This after a two-day oversight visit on 23-24 August 2022 by Minister Kubayi, joined by Deputy Minister Pam Tshwete, MEC of Human Settlements, Siphokazi Lusithi and the District Executive Mayor, Cllr Mesuli Ngqondwana and Inqquza Hill Local Municipality Executive Mayor, Cllr Nonkosi Pepping. To improve overall performance, a technical team in the district has been activated to deal with some of the challenges that must be immediately prioritised. This includes ensuring that all disasters are treated with the urgency that requires us to assist affected families.
“The turnaround time for the delivery of temporary shelters needs to be improved. Therefore, the Department will strengthen its Enhanced People’s Housing Process (EPHP) Programme to complement efforts to respond to disasters”, said Minister Kubayi. In this programme, beneficiaries will be actively involved in constructing their house, an intervention that received a positive response during engagements with communities.
The local municipalities visited were Mhlontlo, King Sabata Dalindyebo, Nyandeni and Ingquza Hill. The three spheres of government provided a progress report on interventions to date while noting concern at the rate of implementation of interventions.
The delegation noted concern at the rate at which interventions were being implemented, particularly given that a disaster should be treated as an emergency requiring immediate action. To improve overall performance, a technical team in the district has been activated to review plans to unblock challenges to roll out the necessary services to communities.
The team will also review plans to ensure the speedy provision of bulk infrastructure for all projects and unblock all blocked projects. The focus will remain on the disadvantaged and vulnerable groups in those communities.
“With all the challenges that have been shared, it is important that all three spheres of government work together, as envisaged by the DDM, to find solutions to fast-track service delivery”, said MEC Siphokazi Lusithi. Some interventions include prioritising the permanent solution rather than providing temporary residential units.
Minister Kubayi warned all implementing agents and contractors working on human settlements projects across the country that the days of poor project delivery without consequences are coming to an end. Contractors who abandon projects and fail to deliver quality human settlements timeously will face the prospect of being blacklisted.
For media inquiries,
Ms Hlengiwe Nhlabathi-Mokota, Spokesperson to the Minister of Human Settlements Cell: 0647548426 or firstname.lastname@example.org and Mr Caswell Mabunda Acting Director Communications for Eastern Cape Human Settlements Cell: 074 142 3870 or CaswellM@ecdhs.gov.za