09 Nov SHRA Social Housing Project Sees Dignity and Economic Opportunity for Ekurhuleni Residents
9 Nov 2020. “Housing ought not to be a privilege, but a basic right,” said Ekurhuleni Executive Mayor, Mzwandile Masina, speaking yesterday at the hand-over of the newly completed Kempton Village Social Housing Project in Ekurhuleni. “Through this project, we are providing our people not just with homes, but with dignity, fulfilling their most basic needs.”
The Social Housing Regulatory Authority (SHRA) and the Department of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation handed over the newly completed project in Ekurhuleni yesterday, 8 November, with media and stakeholders in attendance. Esteemed guests included Ekurhuleni Executive Mayor, Mzwandile Masina; SHRA Chairperson, Bathabile Dlamini; former Ekurhuleni Mayor, Duma Nkosi; Department of Human Settlements DG, Mbulelo Tshangana and the National Empowerment Fund CEO, Philisiwe Mthethwa, amongst others.
The complex comprises 312 units and was completed in just 13 months, despite disruptions. Valued at R127-million, the complex will cater for rentals for low- to middle-income earners who will be paying from R600-R4800 for rent, depending on their income bracket.
Mayor Masina was introduced by Director-General Mbulelo Tshangana who welcomed all in attendance and congratulated all those involved in the project. “We want you to address us today – this is your project, your municipality, your community, and the Department of Human Settlements is happy to see this building join the neighbourhood.”
Mayor Masina said that all three spheres of government have come together in one way or another to ensure that the Kempton Village Social Housing Project is successful. “We are creating a new community through this particular project.” He reported that over the past ten years, the City of Ekurhuleni has been unveiling tens of thousands of housing units of different kinds, all centred around affordability. “The launch of this Kempton Village project is aligned with our own vision, and the pursuit of spatial justice. Further, the multiplier effect created by this project will help unlock the economic, social and cultural potential of Ekurhuleni, which is emerging as a major economic nerve centre. But more than this, this project will change lives. Let this be your home,” he concluded.
SHRA Chairperson Bathabile Dlamini addressed attendees, stating that SHRA has a mandate to provide affordable rental accommodation. “Yes, every role player here today has been vital in ensuring the provision of this complex, but let us not forget the most important stakeholders here – the residents. It is these people to whom we are responsible, to ensure they stay closer to work, have more time with their children, and be protected from violence. Our foremost interest is that this place must be safe for women,” she said, citing the prevalence of gender-based violence in South Africa.
The hand over event also included an inspection of the units led by Yusuf Gani of YG Property Investments, and an address by National Empowerment Fund CEO Philisiwe Mthethwa. She stated: “It is an honour to have partnered with different stakeholders for this project, and this is not the first project we have worked on with SHRA. We like this project for its contribution to employment and its social aspect. Our quest is to grow the economy brick by brick.”
The development created 565 jobs during construction and was funded jointly by SHRA, the Gauteng Department of Human Settlements, the Geotech Variation Grant, the National Empowerment Fund and YG Property Investments. Residents have moved in and comprise largely of youth and young families, which this complex was designed for, featuring jungle gyms, braai areas and a community centre. Additionally, the complex boasts advanced technology features such as biometric access control, full CCTV coverage and fibre to the home.