Press Release - 21 December 2014
When l look at what we have achieved in six months since the 2014 general elections in May, we must all be proud of what we have achieved, we deserve a good rest to recharge and prepare for 2015.
Over the last few months we have laid a solid foundation as a sector towards the delivery on our target. We have identified 50 priority projects that will deliver more than 10 000 housing opportunities each. This will be a combination of Breaking New Ground (BNG) houses, affordable bonded houses, rental and serviced sites.
As an urgent priority we have launched the Military Veterans housing programme aimed at providing housing to our heroes and heroines who sacrificed so much in order to bring about freedom and democracy which we all enjoy today. Our target is to eradicate more than 5000 military veterans’ housing backlog by 2017.
To consolidate our resources and also prepare all stakeholders to achieve the 1.5 Million housing opportunities we convened the National Human Settlements Indaba on October 16 – 17. The Indaba was also a platform to review progress made in the implementation of the 2004 Breaking New Ground Policy and review the Social Contract for the Rapid Housing Delivery signed in 2005. At the end of the Indaba a Social Contract for the Development of Sustainable Human Settlements was signed with human settlements stakeholders. The contract details their (stakeholders) level of partnerships and contribution towards the 1.5 Million housing opportunities by 2019. The contract and contribution of all stakeholders which include banks, mines, private affordable housing developers, big employers and contribution of Government is estimated to value over R250 Billion by 2019.
To ensure youth participation in the implementation of human settlements programmes we hosted the National Human Youth Summit together with the Department of Small Business Development and the Presidency. The Summit shared with the leadership of youth formations and many other stakeholders programmes aimed at empowering young people and also challenged youth to actively participate in the implementation of the Social Contract for the Development of Sustainable Human Settlements. The Youth Summit concluded with the signing of a National Human Settlements Youth Accord (NHSYA) for active participation in sustainable human settlements development;
At the end of the Youth Summit, the National Human Settlements Youth Brigade was also launched. The Youth Brigade programme will see 10 000 young people getting training in different construction fields and the running of small businesses while getting experienced at Mega projects across the country by 2019. For the financial year 2015/016 more than 2000 young people are currently being trained to start work in February 2015.
We seek to finalise title deeds for close to 1 Million citizens who currently occupy Government supported housing pre 1994 and after 1994. We believe the title deed will allow them to access finance to improve their houses and to access finance for personal and family development. We urge those who are receiving title deeds not to sell their houses to secure money for entertainment and short term benefits.
As we take some time to rest and reflect on 2014 let us rest knowing that we have achieved what can be described as a miracle and have started our five-year journey to achieve our target of 1.5 Million housing opportunities by 2019. The 2015 is a year of youth empowerment through the youth brigade and fast tracked implementation of our Programme.
In 2015 we call on all big employers, mines, parastatals and multi-national organisations to assist their employees to have own houses. They can buy them serviced sites, give guarantees for them to access housing finance or buy them start up houses.
Our Christmas call to all big employers is that let's all join hands to assist all South Africans to have a house and a home.
In 2015 we also call on youth organisations to partner with us to form cooperatives and companies to participate in the rolling out of the Youth Brigade and the total human settlements Programme. We want young people in construction and human settlements infrastructure development.
To all South Africans, young and old we ask you to work with us. We have said we will prioritize elderly, child headed households and military veterans. I believe if we all work towards a common purpose nothing will stop us from achieving our target which is to provide shelter to all South Africans.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.
LN Sisulu, MP
Minister of Human Settlements
Ndivhuwo Mabaya, Ministry Spokesperson
Mobile: 083 645 7838
Date: 21 December 2014