Government assists 44 families left homeless in Margate following a fire
Durban - Masingene informal settlement residents in Margate, whose homes were destroyed in a recent fire, received 24 Temporary Residential Areas (TRAs), vouchers, blankets and building materials on Saturday from the Departments of Social Development, Human Settlements and Public Works.
Social Development MEC Nonhlanhla Khoza and Human Settlements and Public Works MEC Ntuthuko Sibiya provided the relief.
According to Human Settlements spokesperson Mbulelo Baloyi, a gas stove had exploded in the informal settlement last week causing a fire which destroyed about 40 shacks in the area, leaving about 44 families homeless.
Khoza said the fire had caused her sleepless nights as the burning of households affected the government deeply. “We needed to speedily come up with some recommendations, tangible implemented plans. So as the Department of Social Development, we have done some profiling and identified 44 individuals that were affected.”
With everything burnt, including identity documents, Khoza told the affected community they would receive further assistance from the South African Social Security Agency.
She said social workers would be sent out accordingly. Khoza also said that a food provider would be organising food parcels and vouchers.
MEC Sibiya and his department, alongside Social Development, and the Ray Nkonyeni Local Municipality, acknowledged that building houses was a lengthy process.
“We are bringing building material for our people because the reality is that we cannot build houses today or tomorrow or even next week. But we cannot allow them to sleep without shelter,” said Sibiya.
They have also engaged in talks with the fire department concerning teaching communities how to extinguish fires sooner.
Sibiya also informed residents about a slums clearance project the department was busy with. The project would help eliminate shacks by helping shack dwellers move into decent homes. About 800 houses were being built in line with the project, Sibiya said.
The Daily News