A R16million housing project unveiled in Gauteng earlier this week will help deal with the provincial backlog by constructing at least 500 new homes.
Gauteng Housing MEC Nomvula Mokonyane and Ekur-huleni Mayor Duma Nkosi un-veiled the project in Etwatwa.
Etwatwa Extension 36 has been identified by the provincial Housing Department as one of the areas where new houses could be built in order to reduce the number of people living in informal settlements.
The area has 1214 official stands, however there are 1413 informal structures built on them. One of the challenges facing the housing project is the overflow of just less than 200 informal structures that need to be temporarily moved to a vacant site until a permanent location is serviced with running water.
The MEC urged residents not to allow other people to continue erecting shacks in the already overflowing area.
The department appointed contractors in January last year to install water and sewer services and toilet structures in the southern and northern regions of Etwatwa Extension 36.
Mokonyane said: "We hope that when you move into your houses soon, you destroy the shacks. Let our good work be seen - that we are indeed changing our people's lives for the better. Let all of us ensure that by 2014 our province is shack free."
Speaking at the social cluster's briefing on their programme of action in Cape Town last month, Housing Minister Lindiwe Sisulu said though the government had supplied more than 2,5million low-cost houses, it would need to build at least 500000 homes a year in order to overcome the current backlog.
Government's housing programme has seen close to 300 000 new subsidies allocated in the past two years. - BuaNews