SWEETWATERS HOUSING COSTS SCANDAL

The cost to build an RDP house in the Sweetwaters Housing project near King William’s Town is now in excess of R105 000 per unit.

In response to a parliamentary question in the Provincial Legislature, it was revealed that 87 partially completed houses in this project near King William’s Town had so far cost R9,15 million to build. If this amount is divided by 87 (the amount of units partially built so far), a building amount of R105 172 per house is arrived at.

The original budget for the project was set at R13, 857 million to build 620 units. This would have equated to R 22 350 per unit which was within the correct building price norm for this project.

The revised budget is now projected at R19, 571, 776 million for 620 units. What is even more shocking is that despite these 87 units being partially completed, 77 of them has been vandalised.

Why has this project been allowed to skyrocket in costs to the unacceptable amount of R105 000 per unit? With the housing subsidy for beneficiaries now at R54 000 per individual, the costs of these houses will be unaffordable for the very people the project was intended to help in the first place. These people have been waiting eight years for this project to get off the ground, and it seems they are no closer to having homes.

I have followed up this matter with more questions to Housing MEC Nombulelo Mabandla, asking whether this matter has been reported to the Auditor General, what action has been taken against the officials in this matter and why the contractor assigned to the project has not been blacklisted as a contractor?

Should it be found that nothing has been done in this regard; the DA will consider lodging a complaint and request to the Auditor General for an investigation into this matter.

For further information, please contact Dacre Haddon, MPL on 079 694 3788