2800 houses in 4 months, housing minister Sisulu promises Masiphumelele residents

Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu has promised Masiphumelele residents that her department, in concert with the provincial authorities, will build 2,800 homes in the area in the wake of the devastating fire that tore through the informal settlement Thursday, leaving some 4000 people homeless.

The national housing minister was in the area Tuesday where she presented a housing plan to residents and stakeholders.

The massive blaze swept through part of the sprawling informal settlement, razing well over 1,000 homes and leaving thousands of residents destitute.

The settlement’s entire electrical network was gutted along with a substation.

Water and sanitation infrastructure was also destroyed and includes over 100 toilets, taps and standpipes.

Sisulu said that she recognized the suffering that residents have had to endure over the years with multiple disastrous fires hitting the area, saying that government could no longer look the other way.

2,800 homes in four months

She said her department was using an adapted version of the plan they put in place in Knysna after a devastating fire there.

So, she’s promised that 2,800 homes would be built over the next four months.

The houses will be built of fire-resistant materials and will cost about R64,000 each, and every street in the area will also get a fire hydrant.

The total project will cost R200 million.

The project will be executed by the City of Cape Town and Human Settlements Mayco member Malusi Booi said that the process kicked off today.

“Contractors are coming back in January. They started putting in services. We understand that in April, we should be done.”

They’re hoping to have the homes ready for habitation by April next year.