The Nelson Mandela Bay RDP housing backlog is currently sitting at 90,000 units with an additional 42,000 RDP houses requiring rectification and in some instances demolition due to sub standard construction.
The 2013/14 financial year will see only 2 078 RDP houses built and 237 houses rectified in Nelson Mandela Bay.
This painstakingly slow pace of delivery is likely to continue as the construction cost per housing unit rises year on year.
The current construction cost of an RDP house is R102 000 putting the total amount required to deal with the Metro’s backlog at more than R9 Billion. Minister of Human Settlements, Tokyo Sexwale, recently announced that free housing is unsustainable and is placing increasing pressure on the state.
Adding insult to injury the Human Settlements Department in the Eastern Cape under spent its 2012/13 budget by R292 million.
The DA believes that housing is a critical component of redressing the inequalities of the past. We believe that the solution to addressing the metro’s housing crisis and relieving pressure on government is to empower people to construct their own houses.
The Metro should make serviced land available, with basic services, such as water, electricity and water-borne sanitation. Furthermore, community advice centres should be established where assistance can be given to community members to gain the necessary skills to construct their own sustainable housing units.
By adopting this strategy, the energy of our residents will not be directed towards protests and building shacks in illegal areas, but rather towards providing decent permanent accommodation for themselves in properly planned areas.