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Boosting Soweto's future

By Penwell Dlamini | 2012-04-02 08:09:26.0

THE past week saw the unveiling of a multi-billion rand investment in Soweto that is expected to create jobs and stimulate economic development in the country's biggest township.

On Tuesday a roof-wetting party was hosted for the Protea Glen Mall, built by the Masingita Group of companies at a cost of more than R380-million.

More than 700 jobs were created during the construction phase and 1500 permanent jobs will be created when the mall is officially opened in September.

During the event Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane announced that her government would soon open a state-of-the-art theatre at the old Jabulani Amphitheatre in Soweto.

Mokonyane said the government had committed itself to revitalising Soweto and investing in the township's economy.

On Friday Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe and Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale launched the R487-million, newly constructed Jabulani Community Residential Units (CRU) housing project in Soweto.

This project will see 1919 units completed over the next few years.

Motlanthe then officially opened Toyota and Volkswagen dealerships in Orlando West, a development that created 90 new jobs.

"Today's opening of these dealerships not only mark another milestone for the Maponya Group and indeed the people of Soweto, but also tells the moving story of the tenacity of the human spirit to refuse to give in to impediments subjectively imposed on human life," Motlanthe said.

Legendary Soweto businessman Richard Maponya said the opening of the two dealerships was a dream come true.

"At last it is indeed happening and I am grateful for this day, which you are celebrating with us this afternoon," Maponya said.

He thanked the management of VW and Toyota for believing in his dream and committing to "stay in Soweto permanently".