New Human Settlements MEC has work cut out for her

Issued by Sanele Magaqa, MPL
Shadow MEC for Human Settlements

The Democratic Alliance welcomes the removal of former Human Settlements MEC, Nonkqubela Pieters, by Premier Oscar Mabuyane, but serious questions need to be asked why she has been given control of another Department.

Pieters leaves behind a Department, which, by the Premier’s own admission, has suffered greatly under her stewardship. This is why the DA called for Pieters to be removed in the first place.

While we welcome MEC Nonceba Kontsiwe’s appointment, we would like to caution the new MEC that she has her work cut out for her in taking up the reins of Human Settlements.

The Department has failed to utilise the funding provided to it to improve the living conditions of the people of the Eastern Cape. Management consistently fails to implement daily and monthly controls and do not have proper systems of record management.

There are still no consequence management systems in place to blacklist contractors who fail to deliver on houses, or who deliver shoddy workmanship that requires rectification.

MEC Kontsiwe must prioritise the work of the Bid Adjudicating Committee (BAC) and ensure that the committee meets its target of evaluating within 90 days.

The MEC must also focus the issuing of title deeds, as her Department only managed to issue 1 711 deeds in the last financial year, against a target of 10 500.

We would also like to encourage the MEC to deliver a spectrum of support options for different parts of the housing market.

The DA believes that by encouraging market-based solutions for housing provision in so-called ‘gap markets’ and for self-help initiatives, state resources can be freed up to service the poorest and most vulnerable.

The DA will continue to fight for the people of this province to live in dignity.