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Public and private sector joint initiative makes squatters' dreams come true

By unknown | Mar 22, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Namhla Tshisela

Namhla Tshisela

Getting a house for his family has been Amos Mnguni's biggest achievement.

Mnguni, a father of two, recently received the keys to his new home in Cosmo City, north of Johannesburg, thanks to an initiative by Talk Radio 702, First National Bank (FNB), M5 Developments and the Gauteng Department of Housing.

"This will ensure that my children get a better life. I know we are going to be happy here," said Mnguni.

The Mngunis, who lived in Honeydew's Zandspruit informal settlement before getting their new home, are one of 139 families whose dreams of owning a home have been made into reality by the project.

Mnguni said life in Zandspruit was difficult because his children had to travel a long way to school because the area lacked public transport.

The Cosmo City project, which was launched last year, intends to provide 702 houses to low-income earners by the end of July.

"We have made a really big difference in the lives of all the people who have moved their families into these houses," said Pheladi Gwangwa, the station manager of Talk Radio 702.

"We cannot wait to hand over more houses so we can continue turning their dreams into reality."

Marius Marais, chief executive of FNB's housing finance division, said: "It is exciting when the public and private sector collaborate like this to help to house the people of our nation."

Cosmo City in Kya Sands, north of Johannesburg, consists of government-subsidised houses, bonded houses and properties for rent.

The project is targeting people earning between R3500 and R7000 a month.

People earning less than R3500 get government housing subsidies and those earning more than R7000 can get housing finance from FNB.


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