Mr Bongikosi Madikizela Handed Over 20 State of The Art Houses To Farmworkers
On 1 August 2016, the Western Cape Minister of Human Settlements, Mr Bongikosi Madikizela handed over 20 state of the art houses to farmworkers in Haarlem, just outside George.
All the recipient farmworkers are employed at a local farm, Strydom Estate. According to the one of the directors of the farm, Johan Strydom, they bought the land so that their employees and ex-employees could have decent houses.
“We want the best for our workers, ex-workers and their families,” said Mr Stydom.
The two-bedroomed houses that boast a shower, a solar powered geyser and DSTV were made possible through a partnership between the Provincial Department of Human Settlement and various business people from the George and Cape Town.
Each of the houses costs R350 000, of which the Provincial Department of Human Settlements contributed a subsidy of one hundred and ten thousand Rand, while the business community took care of the balance.
The contribution of the business community ensured that the houses have extras such as the shower (ie. as opposed to a bath that the Department normally provides), solar powered geysers and DSTV connection in each house. Business people involved in the project include Jan Schoeman, Johan Strydom and Oeloff Badernhost, who paid for the satellite dishes for DSTV connection.
For DSTV, every beneficiary will pay R39.00 per month to keep connected to SABC, eTV and a few other channels as part of a basic package.
Speaking during the occasion, Minister Madikizela thanked the business community and George Municipality for this innovation. He also expressed his excitement and concerns.
“I am excited and worried at the same time. I am excited because these are state of the art houses that show innovation from the side of government. I am sad because this is the standard that beneficiaries will be expecting from now on and we cannot make it happen without support from the business community,” said Minister Madikizela.
“From the bottom of my heart I would like this to be a flagship project that will be replicated throughout the province. The challenge might only be to getting partners,” added Minister Madikizela.
The beneficiaries included a physically challenged Mrs Magdelein Hennies, Mr Charlie van Rooyen and Mrs Gladys Smith who are both elderly.
Mrs Gladys Smith (61) said she did not have enough words to express how happy she was to have he own house.
“I don’t know what to say may God bless them all,” said Mrs Smith.