Minister Madikizela's Opening Remarks at the Access to Basic Services Workshop | Western Cape Government


Minister Madikizela's Opening Remarks at the Access to Basic Services Workshop

21 May 2012

The Western Cape Government Human Settlements Minister Bonginkosi Madikizela delivered the opening address at the Access to Basic Services Workshop at the Fire and Ice Hotel, Bree Street, Cape Town, on 22 May 2012. The workshop was held to communicate the department's Access to Basic Services Strategy and the Incremental Approach to Human Settlements Delivery.

Minister Madikizela said, "We need to move away from a populist approach to housing, where we continue doing something which we know is not sustainable. There are simply not enough resources to do what we want, and so we have to do things differently with what we have. We have to think differently, and not do things as we have always done them."

"It is inexcusable that so many people are living without basic services 18 years after democracy, while we spend over a hundred thousand rand per person to provide a relative few with a top structure. "

"Sometimes giving houses is not the best option, and people don't really want them. Many times we find that a few months after we have handed over a house, the intended beneficiary sells it at a fraction of the R100 000 cost to another person."

"We often tend to allow housing delivery to be driven by people with other agendas. Often the service providers, like the contractors and construction companies, influence the municipal human settlements planning process, and drive how the money is spent, as they push for more houses. In the traditional housing delivery process, municipalities submit human settlements plans to the provincial government for approval and funding. We need to drive the agenda as government, and spend more on basic services, and less on top structures, so that more people benefit with basic services."

"We are here today not to talk about something new, but to drive the message home that its basic services first, and then top structures later. This is what we mean by incremental development."

"There is an increasing demand for houses in the Western Cape. We can build between 13 000 and 15 000 houses per year, and there is an in migration of around 50 000 people per year. We are not making a dent in the backlog. It is not acceptable, that while we provide houses for a few, many have nothing. Instead of spending R100 000 for a house, let us service three sites at R30 000 each."

"Today is a recognition that providing basic services for everyone is very urgent, and we need local government, or the municipalities, to really get this. We need to move with speed to implement the plans we have so that people live with dignity and health."

Media Enquiries: 

Bruce Oom
Spokesperson for Minister Madikizela
Cell: 072 465 5177
Tel: 021 483 6622
Fax: 021 483 3888