Andrew Louw, MPL
DA Provincial Leader:
The Democratic Alliance has submitted written questions to the MEC of COGHSTA today to determine the current status of the bucket eradication programme.
We want to determine what happened to the provincial government’s commitment to eradicate the bucket system by March 2015. This assurance was given by premier Sylvia Lucas in her June 2014 state of the province address, when she allocated R145 million for the eradication of buckets. Her words were that the provincial government “has unequivocally resolved to implement a Bucket Eradication Programme that will see all buckets removed by March 2015. We are pleased to report that we are well on course to achieve this before the target date”.
However, in the recent state of the province address, the premier allocated a further R165 million and said that it would eradicate 3000 buckets. How did the provincial government go from being “well on course to achieve” eradication to needing an additional R165 million to eradicate 3 000 buckets? Is the 3 000 buckets the last of the bucket system in the province or will the Bucket Eradication Programme be rolled over to the 2016 financial year?
We are also curious about the costs of eradication of one bucket. At R165 million, it will cost approximately R55 000 to eradicate one bucket. The R165 million is enough to build 1 650 houses from scratch, which is more than the department plans to build in this financial year. We want to have the assurance that the provincial government will appoint reputable contractors who will eradicate the bucket system quickly and efficiently. We don’t want the contractors who build houses which need to be rectified two or three months afterward.
We call on the provincial government to take its commitment to eradicate the bucket system seriously. It is a degrading, dehumanising system which has no place in South Africa. It is absolutely unacceptable that 7% of our people still have to use this filthy system.