Independent Online

Thursday, July 7, 2022

Like us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterView weather by locationView market indicators

Our houses are falling apart, say residents

Cape Times-160128-Residents of Protea Street in Kewtown in Athlone complain that some RDP houses were not properly finished-Picture by BHEKI RADEBE

Cape Times-160128-Residents of Protea Street in Kewtown in Athlone complain that some RDP houses were not properly finished-Picture by BHEKI RADEBE

Published Feb 2, 2016

Share

Cape Town - Residents who have been calling low-cost houses in Kewtown home since December, are crying foul after allegations of corruption and poor workmanship arose.

The housing project, parallel to Jan Smuts Drive, has been dogged by complaints from residents and contracted workers who have looked to the Athlone Community Policing Forum (CPF) for intervention after concerns “fell on deaf ears”.

Story continues below Advertisement

Mellon Housing Initiative was contracted to build the low-cost houses.

The same company was responsible for similar projects in Hazendal and Heideveld.

The 56 houses being built in Kewtown formed part of the Hazendal Infill Housing Project. Each unit costs the taxpayer R120 000.

Story continues below Advertisement

The first 35 families moved into their houses on December 18.

According to CPF chairwoman Aziza Kannemeyer, many residents have complained that the buildings in Bokmakierie Street were “falling apart” as newly built walls were “collapsing”.

“On Christmas Day, people even experienced windows falling out in Protea Street where residents have already moved in.

Story continues below Advertisement

“They do not have electricity, there are complaints of dampness and no ventilation. People do not want to complain to the council because this is the first time they have ever lived in a brick and mortar home,” she said.

However, the city council denied the houses were sub-standard.

Mayoral committee member for human settlements, Benedicta van Minnen said she had not received written complaints.

Story continues below Advertisement

“However, all building quality issues must be directed to Mellon Housing Initiative or the project manager at the site office,” she said.

Gary Kleu, from the Mellon Housing Initiative, said no houses were handed over to beneficiaries that the city council was not happy with.

“The city and the appointing engineer would not sign off the houses unless it is to their specifications,” he said.

The Cape Argus visited the area last week. Most residents only spoke to the Cape Argus on condition of anonymity because they were desperate for formal housing and feared the city council would, “take back our houses”.

A resident who has been on the housing waiting list since 1991, showed the Cape Argus a gap between two connecting walls running from the floor to the ceiling. Many complained that there was no ventilation in their homes.

Another resident said he had to spend more than R20 000 to make his house “liveable” and fix the problems that were “ignored” by the contractors.

Related Topics:

Share