Joburg Housing MMC Mlungisi Mabaso said the city was investigating how several young people became the beneficiaries of RDP houses in Fleurhof, near Soweto.
Mabaso was speaking at a young people’s construction summit in Brixton yesterday. He said the city was investigating all recipients of RDP houses in Fleurhof since he came into office. Mabaso said some of those who had received houses had done so using fake documents, while in some cases they got the houses from scammers pretending to work for the city.
Mabaso said the investigation was not to discredit the work that had been done by the ANC before the city’s multiparty government took over after the local government elections late last year. He said there were other house invasions that the city was looking into.
“The investigation is regarding the allocation from Fleurhof, and this is an allocation that we were not aware of, and this stems from people who were using the logo of the city and the Department of Housing. When we requested documents we discovered that a number of young people had received houses,” he said.
Mabaso said his department had learned about the matter through security guards who were guarding the properties. He said it was not clear if those who had occupied the houses illegally had been working with city officials or criminal syndicates. He said all those who had moved into the Fleurhof housing project recently would be vetted.
“We are not sure if city officials are involved, we are waiting for the investigators to give us an update, then we can take action. They have written me an email asking for further investigation. I don’t want to say city officials are involved when they are not involved,” Mabaso said.
He said allocations at Fleurhof would be temporarily halted while by the city’s anti-corruption unit Group Forensic Investigation Services (GFIS) investigated the matter.
Mabaso said the purpose of the city hosting an engagement with young people in construction was to ensure that young people in that sector could grow their businesses and interact with experts in the field.
“We wanted to engage with young people in the constriction sector, and those who want to get into the sector. We had the Department of Housing there, and they presented opportunities that were available for young people,” Mabaso said.
Joburg ANC regional spokesperson Sasabona Manganye scoffed at insinuations that the party allocated people irregularly, saying the multi-party coalition government should take responsibility for the allocation of houses in Fleurhof.
“MMC Mabaso was in charge of housing when the ANC was in power in the city. They should take responsibility they are in power and they should stop blaming everything on the ANC,” Manganye said.
Gauteng Human Settlements spokesperson Tahir Sema referred all queries regarding the Fleurhof housing project to the Joburg Housing Department.