North West Local Government MEC Gordon Kegakilwe cuts a ribbon while Dimakatso Digatsu looks on. He handed over the house to Digatsu in Mabalstad outside Rustenburg and also announced that more than 1 000 low-cost houses have been earmarked for villages in the Moses Kotane municipality. Picture: ANA/Stringer.

MABALSTAD - More than 1,000 low cost houses have been earmarked for villages in the Moses Kotane municipality, North West local government MEC Gordon Kegakilwe said on Monday. 

"In this financial year I have decided that 1,855 houses will be allocated for Moses Kotane [municiplaity]. These houses will be build in rural villages. This will create short term employment for residents,"  he said.  

Kegakilwe was speaking in Mabalstad outside Rustenburg, at the handing over of three houses built by Magalies Water as part of its corporate social investment programme. 

"We are going to try by all means that in these projects, women, disabled people, youth and our military veterans, who are in the building sector benefit so that we can develop them."

Magalies Water built a three-bedroom house for Dimakatso Digatsu, 86, in Mabalstad. Two other house were build in Motlhabe for the late Andries Ngolosa, 84, and at Seshibitswe for Johannes Mokgongwe, 83, respectively. 

Dimakatso Digatsu (with a walking stick) steps into her new house in Mabalstad outside Rustenburg. The house was built by Magalies Water as part of its corporate social investment programme. Picture: ANA/Stringer.

Digatsu had been staying in a shack with her eight grandchildren who are orphans. They depend on her old-age social grant as a source of income. 

"I am very happy. If I was strong I would have jumped high with joy," she said. 

Her house consists of three bedrooms, an open plan kitchen and lounge, as well as separate bathroom and toilet. 

Ngolosa passed on and his house was handed over to his widow who is blind and who had been living in a shack with six children and grandchildren. 

Mokgongwe from Seshibitswe shared a mud house with his grandchild who is an orphan. They survive on his old-age grant.

All the three houses have been electrified. Magalies Water Board chairperson Star Vilakazi said the company spent R900,000 to build the houses and each of the three families had been given a vegetable garden, as well as 20 egg laying chickens to generate income and supply them with food.

"Give a man a fish and he will be hungry again, but teach him how to catch a fish he will not be hungry again. We recognise that there is a need for a house but we must also eat.  

"These chickens each produce four eggs in a week. The families can sell the eggs for profit and also sell the vegetables. There is water for the chickens and for the garden,"  he said. 

They would be mentored for a period of a year on how to handle the chicken and garden projects. 

They have also been given access to water. 

African News Agency (ANA)