Mayco member for Human Settlements Malusi Booi writes that the City of Cape Town refutes the claim that its housing programme has collapsed. Picture: Brendan Magaar/African News Agency(ANA)
Mayco member for Human Settlements Malusi Booi writes that the City of Cape Town refutes the claim that its housing programme has collapsed. Picture: Brendan Magaar/African News Agency(ANA)

‘Good’ party politicking over City of Cape Town’s housing provision is spreading misinformation

By Opinion Time of article published Oct 21, 2021

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by Malusi Booi

The article “City of Cape Town and the Western Cape government slammed for 'weak' housing programme” (Cape Argus, October 14) contains a lot of misinformation.

The City refutes the claim that its housing programme “has collapsed”. This is politicking at its best by Good and the seemingly aligned Facebook group Stop CoCT, the latter especially is not an authority on the South African housing regime.

Between 2015 and 2020, the City enabled over 100 000 housing opportunities across the metro, with roughly half built by the private sector, and the remainder by the City and Western Cape Government.

The City’s new Human Settlements Strategy aims to enable up to 30 000 more opportunities per year, mainly to be delivered by the private sector.

More than 13 300 housing opportunities are currently under construction, with a further 8 000 in the construction tender phase, and 37 500 opportunities in the planning stage as at June 2021. The bulk of these housing projects are being developed on well-located land.

Furthermore, it is a lie that City social housing projects in the Cape Town inner city have been cancelled.

There are approximately 2 000 social housing units already in the pipeline for the central Cape Town area and 2 500 along the Voortrekker Corridor and near important economic nodes nearing completion or commencement of construction.

There are approximately 6 500 units currently in Cape Town’s overall social housing pipeline and around 50 land parcels city-wide with ongoing investigation into various opportunities.

The housing delivery performance in Cape Town has little to do with the City’s former Transport and Development Authority (TDA) which was then led by Mr Herron – much has changed since.

The biggest direct impact on housing delivery is the economy and the more recent impact of Covid-19, failing and outdated national government frameworks for housing delivery (where Mr Herron’s leader serves in the national government cabinet), diminishing grants and rising building costs.

The demand for affordable housing in Cape Town, as in other cities in South Africa, is acute. There are currently more than 340 000 applicants with a waiting status registered with the City’s Housing Needs Register.

It must be noted the register is not static – as opportunities are awarded to beneficiaries, they are removed from the database, and new beneficiaries are added. So to send out misinformation that this database is not managed with the utmost care, is completely unacceptable.

* Councillor Malusi Booi, Mayoral Committee Member for Human Settlements, City of Cape Town.

** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Media.

Cape Argus

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