Mpisemoyeni Dlomo receives his title deed for his new home from KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Human Settlements and Public Works Neliswa Peggy Nkonyeni and Umvoti Municipality mayor Thami Ngubane in Greytown.
Durban - After living for 10 years in one of Greytown’s most appalling slums, 77-year-old Mpisemoyeni Dlomo was handed the title deed to his new home.

He was one of 100 people moved from the Lindelani informal settlement to new houses in Greytown, 150km north of Durban - a project headed by the Department for Human Settlements and Public Works.

In addition, MEC Neliswa Peggy Nkonyeni and Umvoti Municipality mayor Thami Ngubane handed over 15 title deeds to selected beneficiaries, confirming security of tenure.

“I’m so happy. I used to live in Greytown but I went to Joburg for work and when I returned I didn’t have a house anymore. I was forced to live in the slums, to be close to the CBD for work,” Dlomo said.

His shack in Lindelani was ceremoniously demolished and a tearful Dlomo celebrated outside his new home. After living alone for many years, Dlomo said life in the slums was hard, but his prayers were answered when he was told he was getting a new house.

The Greytown Slums Clearance Housing Project will see more than 500 shack dwellers moved to new houses. If the project is completed in the stipulated time, Umvoti could be one of the first slum-free municipalities in the province.

Department spokesperson Mbulelo Baloyi said the project cost the department R60.6 million. The next phase, which will cost another R60m, will see another 500-plus houses built for residents living in three other slums in the area.

“In total, the project is over R120m and will see 1027 houses built in Greytown. The MEC wants to see this project to its finality and said she doesn’t want to return to Greytown and see slums sprouting up again, hence our reason for demolishing shacks as families are moved,” Baloyi said.

He said the land on which the slums were belonged to Transnet and the department was in talks to negotiate time to allow residents to be moved before it takes any legal action against the dwellers.

The Mercury