State land for housing

State land for housing
•Wed, 18 Apr 2007

By Bheki Mbanjwa

THE shortage of land suitable for housing developments is soon to be a thing of the past, according to the MEC for housing, Mike Mabuyakhulu.

“The National Department of Housing is currently leading an intergovernmental structure which is preparing the establishment of a special purpose vehicle (SPV) to which all state-owned land will be transferred,” he said.

Mabuyakhulu went on to say that the “initiative is being undertaken to ensure that our housing programmes can access suitable, serviceable and affordable land in close proximity to areas of economic opportunities”. He was speaking during his budget speech for the 2007/2008 financial year.

He also announced an increase in housing subsidy allocations. The proposed subsidy quantum adjustment is from R42 007 per housing unit to R44 694.

“This demonstrates our resolve to ensure that we continue to provide adequate housing to our people,” Mabuyakhulu said.

He added that one of the department’s priorities is the slum clearance programme, adding that he hopes the Prevention of Re-emergence and Elimination of Slums Bill will be passed by parliament this year. The bill, he said, will empower municipalities to quantify the slum
challenge per municipality, “thereby enabling us to finally be able to chase a definite target”.

The Housing Department plans to spend R21,5 million on housing development and planning, out of the total budget of R 1,5 billion.