Improve housing delivery

THE article on housing delivery in Gauteng in Sowetan on May 18 highlights a situation that is completely unacceptable.

THE article on housing delivery in Gauteng in Sowetan on May 18 highlights a situation that is completely unacceptable.

A house is one's most valuable asset and for the poor a house supplied by the state is like a new life.

When corruption or inefficiency robs people of this, we can expect anger and disillusionment.

The fact that Gauteng's housing MEC and the government acknowledge these problems is progress. But less clear is whether the will and means exist to fix the problems. Perhaps the most frustrating issue is the provincial housing list. How it is maintained and how one advances on it is a mystery. This encourages cronyism and corruption. Many spend years waiting.

As important is the state's failure to manage an efficient and professional civil service.

The housing backlog stands at about 2,2million units. No one denies the state' s role in dealing with this, but it will only be possible with hard-working and ethical civil servants who can manage housing provision with integrity. The government has for too long accepted mediocrity and handed out appointments and tenders on the basis of personal and political connections. We must introduce order and purpose to our housing efforts.

The DA would introduce transparency to housing allocations. People need to know where they stand, how they are progressing and by what criteria this is measured. We would also ensure that officials conduct themselves honestly and professionally. Heads will roll for corruption.Tenders will balance empowerment, cost-effectiveness and quality workmanship.

Bev Abrahams,DA - Gauteng Provincial Legislature

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