A special Freedom Day for people Thembelihle as government registers Thembelihle formally as a housing project
Gauteng Department of Cooperative Governance, Traditional Affairs and Human Settlements MEC Jacob Mamabolo announced on Friday that Thembelihle will now receive dedicated government support, provision of services including housing and related infrastructure such as water and electricity following the approval and formal registration of Thembelihle as a housing project under the Department of Human Settlements.
Gauteng Provincial Government and the City of Johannesburg led by MEC Mamabolo and MMC Dan Bovu respectively held a meeting on Friday with the Thembelihle Crisis Committee where it was also announced that the City of Johannesburg is currently implementing the informal settlements electrification plan which includes Thembelihle as one of the targeted informal settlements in the City. On water supply, the City of Johannesburg will respond to low water pressures in the area and that Joburg Water was on standby to respond to any challenges in the area.
“The registration of Thembelihle as a housing project is a key milestone in the history of Thembelihle. Although we are rendering some services to enable residents to meet their daily needs, it has become imperative to plan better and to manage the informal settlement as a formal project because of the growing needs, demands and challenges in the area. The registration was approved on 30 March 2015 and this marked the beginning of a turnaround for Thembelihle”, MEC Mamabolo said. One of the challenges facing Thembelihle is dolomite in the area, which poses difficulties in developing the area. On the other side the community have contested the veracity of reports that there is dolomite in the area. In response the MMC Bovu announced that the City is in a process to appoint consultants to conduct geotechnical studies in a number of areas in City of Johannesburg including Thembelihle, Meriting, Lawley and Protea amongst others. The results will then be submitted to the Council for Geosciences for final reporting and approval. The appointed consultants will be announced to the community in two months.
MEC Mamabolo also assured the community that while basic services will continue to be delivered in the area pending final geotechnical report and that the process of registering individuals for government housing will continue. Those who don’t qualify for government housing will so be register in order to profile the different groups of people living in Thembelihle so as to check where else they qualify for different forms of human settlements.
“Thembelihle has been registered as a housing project to enable government to invest resources for development and improving lives of this community. The process of registering people for government service will have to be re-done, it becomes difficult for us to plan without knowing who is qualifying for government services and who is not if people are not verified” said MEC Mamabolo.
MEC Mamabolo further said that priority will be given to vulnerable groups like women and people living with disability. He said government will ensure that Thembelihle is stabilised and bring the life of this community to normality.
Thembelihle Crisis Committee representative, Siphiwe Segodi said his organisation welcomed the registration of Thembelihle as a formal housing project and that they are looking forward to the transformation of their area.
Issued by: Gauteng Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs
Source : South African Government