LIGHT AT END OF TUN­NEL FOR PLAS­TIC VIEW FOLK

Pretoria News - - Front Page - SOLLY MSIMANGA Msimanga is the Ex­ec­u­tive Mayor of the City of Tsh­wane

THE Pre­to­ria News on Oc­to­ber 8 pub­lished an ar­ti­cle on the front page un­der the head­line “Why does the mayor have to plead for do­na­tions?”

The ar­ti­cle ques­tions why I, as the Ex­ec­u­tive Mayor of Tsh­wane, had to plead for do­na­tions fol­low­ing the fire at Plas­tic View.

Ac­cord­ing to the ar­ti­cle, 1 500 peo­ple were left home­less.

I sym­pa­thise with all the af­fected res­i­dents, and as­sis­tance was im­me­di­ately given to all those in need.

The plight of the hun­dreds of res­i­dents left with­out shel­ter or bare es­sen­tials prompted me to call on the com­mu­nity at large to lend a hand.

Fires in in­for­mal set­tle­ments are a huge prob­lem.

But the City has put var­i­ous mea­sures in place to deal with this.

This in­cludes, but is not lim­ited to, the con­struc­tion of the top struc­tures, up­grade of bulk ser­vices and retic­u­la­tion of ser­vices in the 2019/20 bud­get and sub­se­quent years.

It is clear from the shack-mark­ing and ben­e­fi­ciary reg­is­tra­tion process that the ma­jor­ity of res­i­dents fall out­side the pre­scripts as stip­u­lated in the hous­ing code.

The City will en­gage all rel­e­vant stake­hold­ers, in­clud­ing the De­part­ment of Home Af­fairs, to pro­vide due relief to all for­eign na­tion­als not fall­ing within the cat­e­gory as set out in the hous­ing code and all other ap­pli­ca­ble leg­is­la­tion.

The City has lim­ited re­sources at its dis­posal, and its pri­mary re­spon­si­bil­ity is to­wards South African cit­i­zens.

It is there­fore in­cum­bent upon Min­is­ter of Home Af­fairs Malusi Gi­gaba to work to­gether and as­sist us with un­doc­u­mented for­eign na­tion­als.

This is­sue falls squarely within his ju­ris­dic­tion.

His fail­ure to act in this re­gard will put fur­ther strain on the al­ready over­stretched re­sources of the mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties.

The City is open to peo­ple from across the con­ti­nent and the world at large.

But the na­tional govern­ment is duty-bound to en­sure that all peo­ple en­ter, live in and leave the coun­try legally.

No coun­try or city can ef­fi­ciently and eq­ui­tably al­lo­cate re­sources with­out know­ing how many peo­ple live within its bor­ders.

In any event, we have ap­pointed the ser­vice provider to es­tab­lish a mixed res­i­den­tial town­ship, to be known as Pre­to­rius Park Ex­ten­sion 40.

This is for a por­tion of the Re­main­der of Por­tion 284 of the Farm Gars­fontein

374-JR, mea­sur­ing 6.4 hectares, and lo­cated east of the Wood­lands Shop­ping Cen­tre.

The de­vel­op­ment site has, among other things, been iden­ti­fied as a re­set­tle­ment area to ac­com­mo­date the ben­e­fi­cia­ries from Plas­tic View in­for­mal set­tle­ment.

The Fi­nal Ba­sic Assess­ment Re­port for En­vi­ron­men­tal Autho­ri­sa­tion was sub­mit­ted to the Gaut­eng De­part­ment of Agri­cul­ture and Ru­ral De­vel­op­ment on Septem­ber 12.

It is ex­pected to con­clude the ap­pli­ca­tion within 107 days af­ter the sub­mis­sion.

In short, the de­ci­sion is ex­pected from the de­part­ment dur­ing Jan­uary

2019.

We are us­ing the ex­ist­ing en­vi­ron­men­tal im­pact assess­ment fo­rum to per­suade the de­part­ment to ex­pe­dite the ap­proval process.

In line with the above, we have also con­ducted the shack-mark­ing and ben­e­fi­ciary reg­is­tra­tion process.

A to­tal of 853 fam­i­lies re­side in Plas­tic View in­for­mal set­tle­ment.

This DA-led ad­min­is­tra­tion re­mains com­mit­ted to pri­ori­tis­ing eq­ui­table and fair ac­cess to a range of hous­ing so­lu­tions and pro­vid­ing fam­i­lies with a safe liv­ing en­vi­ron­ment.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.