Thousands failing to pay for plots in Mbabane
Over 1 000 beneficiaries who benefited in the upgrading of informal settlements have failed to pay for their allocated plots in Mbabane.
The project focused on upgrading four communities, namely Msunduza, Nkwalini Zone 2, Nkwalini Zone 4 and Mahhwalala Zone 6. The failure to pay by the beneficiaries has left the Mbabane Municipal Council with the biggest challenge. According to Minister of Housing and Urban Development Phiwayinkhosi Mabuza, over 3 300 plots were developed by the Mbabane Municipal Council and allocated to people on a 99 year lease. The plots were not for sale but instead the owners were expected to pay E400 commitment fee then had five years to complete the full plot price.
“The Council is experiencing an extremely slow payment of the plots from the beneficiaries of the upgrading project sites,” the minister said.
According to a recently released report on the status of the urban development project upgrading in Mbabane, Mahhwalala Zone 5 began in the year 2000 and upon allocation, beneficiaries were expected to pay a deposit of E400 before the end of six months from the date of allocation.
“In Nkwalini, the plot beneficiaries were expected to pay the deposit of E400 within three months from the date of allocation. The beneficiaries we further given five years to pay the full plot price.
As further incentive to the beneficiaries, government also undertook to pay the rates due on each plot until the price had been fully paid by the beneficiaries,” states the report.
It states that plot payment has been so poor that some beneficiaries have not even paid the E400 deposit since they were allocated.
“Another challenge is that a significant number of those who have fully paid their properties have not taken steps to register their titles, presumably in order to continue to benefit from government paying their rates,” states the report.