Video by Sihle Mavuso
Durban – After securing habitable accommodation for 500 more victims of the KZN floods, the department of human settlements in the province has promised to house everyone before the current year folds.
The department’s MEC, Dr Ntuthuko Mahlaba, said they had set themselves a target to ensure that all the victims were housed and enjoy their Christmas like all other citizens.
Mahlaba gave this assurance on Tuesday while he was in Port Shepstone on the south coast of KwaZulu-Natal where he launched the second phase of the KwaNzimake rural housing project which has 500 units.
While there, he also handed over the phase of the project which yielded 1000 four-roomed RDP hoses
On the issue of the KZN floods of April this year, which killed over 300 people and displaced 4000 families, Mahlaba said they were still hurt as the provincial government as 72 people were still missing, saying African families burying a loved one was very crucial.
He said what was a consolation right now was that they had secured a lease agreement with a property owner to move the batch of 500 victims.
He said they would be moved to the new accommodation on Monday next week.
Last week the provincial government took flak when Premier Nomusa Dube-Ncube announced a prayer service for the victims.
There was a public outcry over that and the prayer was shelved when the provincial government said it had “postponed” it while still insisting that prayer was still needed by the victims.
On the issue of the KwaNzimakwe rural housing project, Mahlaba said that project together with the Masingene slums clearance project near the N2 in Port Shepstone, was aimed at easing the years of housing backlog across the province.
Furthermore, he told the desperate community of KwaNzimakwe that the second phase would kick off with 300 units because the department was facing budget cuts.
The remaining 200 units would be built later and recipients moved in as soon as the project was completed.