Category Archives: Sipho Khumalo

Mercury: Housing plan announced

The banks are given land by the state….The poor are evicted from their land by the state….A poor person charging rent is a shack lord….A bank seeking profit is a ‘public private partnership’….The provincial housing department negotiates with the banks but treats organised shack dwellers with contempt and threats…Who is the public? Who does the state represent? Is it not the case that the one thing that we should learn from ‘the global financial crisis’ is that the private banks bent on private profit should get the hell out of public housing? This deal is one more public subsidy for profit profit.

Housing plan announced

January 27, 2009 Edition 1

Sipho Khumalo

THE KwaZulu-Natal housing department entered into an agreement with First National Bank yesterday that would enable low- to middle-income earners to buy houses in the province.

The agreement covers people earning between R1 500 and R7 500 a month who previously did not qualify for the government housing subsidy.

Announcing the agreement, housing MEC Mike Mabuyakhulu said the government realised that there were many people who did not qualify for the subsidy yet did not earn enough to enter the housing market unaided.

In terms of the agreement First National Bank will be given access to land from various municipalities in the province to develop houses to be sold to people who qualify.

“We believe this agreement is a practical expression of the public-private sector partnership the government always encourages,” Mabuyakhulum said.

First National Bank chief executive officer Sizwe Nxasana said the bank was equally happy working with the provincial housing department.

“If there is one thing that we should learn from the global economic turmoil, it is that the private sector should work with the government to improve the lives of our people,” he said.

New housing policy aimed at developers

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September 12 2006 at 10:27AM

The government is putting the final touches to measures that will force all property developers to include a percentage of lower and middle income housing units in their plans.

Addressing the two-day KwaZulu-Natal housing summit at the International Convention Centre in Durban on Monday, Housing MEC Mike Mabuyakhulu said all housing MECs would meet soon to finalise the percentages of these units to be factored into all housing developments.

Mabuyakhulu said the aim of the policy was to eradicate the distortions caused by apartheid town planners in the provision of housing.

The new housing policy, to be known as the Inclusionary Housing System, would see rich, middle- and low-income earners living side by side.

Deliver affordable housing
Mabuyakhulu said the plan sought to use the power and capacity of private sector developers to deliver affordable housing while delivering housing for the middle to higher ends of the property spectrum.

This would be done by requiring developers of projects above a certain size to provide a proportion of units in the form of affordable housing.

Mabuyakhulu said the government was also considering methods to encourage the private sector to play a more active role in providing housing.

He said the summit also needed to look at how it could encourage a variety of housing options, including company-assisted housing schemes.

Mabuyakhulu announced the government was also intensifying measures aimed at arresting the mushrooming of slums in urban areas.

The Prevention of the Re-emergence of Slums Act was being drafted to prevent those who had been allocated houses from building new slums.

Reacting to a protest on Monday by the slum dwellers’ movement Abahlali baseMjondolo, Mabuyakhulu said: “We do understand their plight, but there is no way the government would be able to eradicate slums in one year. Slums are a legacy of apartheid.”

o This article was originally published on page 2 of The Mercury on September 12, 2006