In most countries, you may be given a council or government apartment or similar abode to live in if you are homeless but which country just GIVES you a house?
We, in the ‘new’ SA promise that if you keeping voting ANC, someday your ticket will come up and you will be given a house – even though it may take a generation. In the meantime, you live with the crime, disease, grime and unemployment (so you may be dead by the time ‘your house’ is ready).
And what a ‘house’ it is - a box that would just about fit two small cars.
Yes, that makes perfect sense. For a Marxist Soviet-trained entity like the ANC.
- - - - -
One of the 9 ‘foreigners’ who qualified for a house in Alexandra has lived in South Africa since 1982, is a permanent resident, has two South African children and is married to a South African woman.
He qualified for the house because he had been forced to move from his original dwelling due to it being located in such a way that it blocked municipal services. After he was forced to move, he lived in a temporary shelter until a house for him became available.
This is according to Julian Baskin, director of the Alexandra Renewal Project, who was addressing the Gauteng housing portfolio committee.
Housing officials came under fire for allocating nine houses to foreigners with permanent residence status in Extension 7 in Alexandra, Johannesburg, where xenophobic violence broke out last month. The housing issue was one of the reasons cited for the anti-immigrant sentiment.
Baskin said the National Housing Code stated that a lawful resident of South Africa qualified for a housing subsidy.
“Clearly, there are problems [with the policy] but we are not a political structure... we work in terms of the political framework we are obliged to follow,” he said.
“If there is a problem with the policy it must go to the housing department for a policy debate.”
He cited the example of the man who has lived here since 1982, and added: “We have a clear and transparent process and there is not a single, solitary person who has been allocated a house who does not deserve it”.
“The issue is clear, there is no corruption,” committee chairman Godfrey Tsotetsi concluded after Baskin’s presentation. “The nine people who benefited qualified in terms of the housing code,” he said.
But the Democratic Alliance’s Kate Lorimer told the committee the housing policy was flawed. “Maybe South Africans should benefit from houses first. Foreigners must apply for citizenship first (as opposed to permanent residency) and only then can they benefit,” she said.
EXPLAINING THE COMPLEXITY OF THE SITUATION IN ALEXANDRA
The Alexandra Renewal Project’s director, Julian Baskin, provided this information to explain why the housing situation in Alexandra township is so complicated:
(1) Only 7% of its 350,000-strong population earn more than R5,000 per month, the required amount to qualify for a housing subsidy.
(2) The 350,000 people in Alexandra live in:
* 8,500 formal houses,
* 34,000 shacks,
* 3 hostel complexes and
* 2,500 flats.
(3) This is at a density of 770 people per hectare. “People live cheek by jowl,” Baskin commented. He added that even the school grounds in Alexandra at one stage had 1,200 shacks on its premises, but this has been cleared by the Alexandra Renewal Project.
(4) The average household income in Alexandra is R2,448 per month, much lower than the Gauteng average of R6,714.
(5) Even worse, some 20% of households in Alexandra live on less than R1,000 per month.
(6) What’s more, a third of its population is unemployed.
(7) More than 50% of households in Alexandra do not consider the township to be their primary home and do not want housing subsidies in Alexandra.
(8) “But Greater Alexandra is located on prime and valuable land within the principal growth corridor of Johannesburg, adjacent to the financial capital of Southern Africa — Sandton — and to key arterial roads and the main highway that links Johannesburg to Pretoria,” said Baskin.