By Ismail Obaray MPL Constituency Head of Central North, Northern Cape:
The DA has today written to Northern Cape MEC of COGHSTA, Alvin Botes, to urgently conduct an investigation into the allotment of RDP houses in the Siyathemba municipality.
Resident’s allege that the municipality is not sticking to its official housing waiting list when it allocates houses.
Allegations include that the Siyathemba municipality is overlooking citizens whose names have been on the housing list for years. At the same time, politically connected persons have apparently leapfrogged to the top of the list, and at least four such recipients were handed the keys to their new houses on Friday.
We particularly want Botes to scrutinize and publicize the Siyathemba housing waiting list to ensure that the housing allotment process has been fair and transparent. If it has been tampered with, then this fraud will necessitate criminal charges being laid and investigated.
The DA believes in a free and fair society and that all housing programmes should ascribe to these core values. Where the DA governs we have opened housing waiting lists, to be transparent, and for recipients to track their housing handover date.
In the City of Cape Town, the DA has taken this further by launching an online housing waiting list available for everyone to see via the internet. This guarantees transparency and accountability in the awarding of RDP houses.
The Northern Cape would do well to open up to the public and take people into confidence, rather than keeping recipients in the dark.
In this regard, the DA will also request the MEC to publicize the changes to criteria for housing beneficiaries, as he has previously made reference to. He needs to clearly explain how the changes will affect the persons on the old housing waiting lists.