Hon Chairperson; hon Ministers present today; Deputy Ministers and Deputy Minister, Zoe Kota-Fredericks, hon Members of Parliament and the Human Settlements team led by Director-General Nyana; distinguished guests, I also recognise the members of the executive councils from the provinces and their guests. As the country is ushering in the end of the second decade since the dawn of democracy, it is of paramount importance to note that we have come so far as a nation. The road has not been easy; there have been ups and downs. However, we continue to have faith in spite of all the challenges we have come across as a nation. We are a winning nation and we shall continue to conquer.
Inde le ndlela. Sihlalo, kubalulekile ukuba sikhumbuzane ngomgama osele uhanjwe ngulo rhulumente oxhuzula imikhala nokhokelwa nguKhongolose ukuqinisekisa ukuba impilo yabantu bonke boMzantsi Afrika ingcono, ingakumbi kwiSebe lokuHlaliswa koLuntu ukususela kunyaka we-1994 ukuza kuthi ga kulo nyaka-mali uphezulu. (Translation of isiXhosa paragraph follows.)
[This road is long. Chairperson, it is important to remind one another of where we come from with this progressive ANC-led government in ensuring that all the people of South Africa are living a better life, especially through the Department of Human Settlements from the year 1994 up until the current financial year.]
This government, through the ANC policy directives, has managed to promulgate a number of progressive policies and pieces of legislation that are serving as guidelines on this road we are travelling to make sure that the lives of our people are transformed for the better. The Department of Human Settlements has taken centre stage in fighting the triple challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality.
The ANC, in its 1992 Ready to Govern policy document, acknowledged the following:
The housing problems created by apartheid are many and varied. They include the racial fragmentation of our cities and the high correlation between housing, poverty and race. A high proportion of the population has poor access to basic services such as water, sanitation, refuse removal and electricity and there is a severe shortage of decent, safe and affordable housing. Much of the housing available to the poor is located in monotonous townships and under-serviced informal settlements, far from places of work and poorly provided with community facilities.
The migrant labour system and the single-sex hostels have further contributed to the disruption of family life and social cohesion.
In changing the draconian apartheid spatial divide, the ANC-led government has produced a number of progressive pieces of legislation and policies that seek to integrate our societies. Given the pervasive poverty and the unequal distribution of wealth and land, the ANC's housing policies will promote nonracialism and nonsexism and cater for the disadvantaged groups such as the very poor, the old and the disabled.
All racially based housing institutions have been replaced by institutions that are nonracial, nonsexist, legitimate and accountable to the people.
In South Africa cohesive and sustainable human settlements can be conceptualised within the context of the provisions and the mandate of the South African Constitution and the comprehensive housing plan known as Breaking New Ground. However, at the national level, sustainable human settlements is also influenced by a broad range of policies and legislation which relate to the Housing Act, Act 107 of 1997, Rental Act, Act 150 of 1999, Land Acquisition for Sustainable Human Settlements Policy, as well as the Housing Development Agency Act, Act 23 of 2008 and the National Housing Code. This means that, in South Africa, human settlements is intended to contribute to creating a quality urban environment, which is sustainable and cohesive, where people can live with dignity and pride.
Namhlanje siyazingca ngenkqubela ethe yenziwa nguKhongolose ukuqinisekisa ukuba ezi ngxaki zithe zaqatshelwa zafakelwa kulo mqulu obizwa ngokuthi yi- Ready to Govern. Sikwazile siyile Ndlu yoWiso-mthetho ukunikezela kwisizwe ngokubanzi ingxelo yoko esele kwenziwe, umzekelo, utshintsho kwiihostele ezazakhiwe ngexesha lorhulumente wengcinezelo ezibizwa ngokuba yi-Community Residential Units Development. (Translation of isiXhosa paragraph follows.)
[Today we are proud of the programme that was developed by the ANC to make sure that those challenges were noted and were listed in the document called Ready to Govern. We as this august House managed to give a full report to the nation about the progress we have made so far; for example, the transformation of the hostels that were built in the apartheid era, which was referred to as Community Residential Units Development.]
With regard to the roll-out of state-subsidised houses to the poor ...
Ukunikezelwa kwamanxiwa asele elungisiwe kuqhubeka njalo. Urhulumente okhokelwa nguKhongolose uqinisekisa ukuba kule kota ephezulu wamkela indlela eneziphumo yokuziswa kweenkonzo [outcome-based service delivery approach]. Iziphumo noxanduva lweli Sebe lezokuHlaliswa koLuntu luqulethwe kumqulu obizwa ngokuba yi-Outcome 8 ngesiNgesi. (Translation of isiXhosa paragraph follows.)
[The process of rolling out developed plots is continuing. The ANC-led government is making sure that in the current quarter we will be accommodating the outcomes-based service delivery approach. The outcomes and the mandate of the Department of Human Settlements are outlined in the programme that is referred to as Outcome 8 in English.]
The objective of Outcome 8 is to create sustainable human settlements and to improve the quality of life. The four outputs for Outcome 8 ...
... ebesele ezithethile ke uMphathiswa apha ukuba ... [... the Minister had already mentioned this...
... are to accelerate the delivery of housing opportunities; to offer access to basic services; the efficient utilisation of land for human settlements development; and an improved property market. The mandate of Outcome 8 since 2010 has been the upgrading of 400 units of accommodation within informal settlements and provision of tenure.
Besele nditshilo ke malungu abekekileyo ukuba loo rhulumente ukwazile ukuba ukususela ngonyaka we-1994 anikezele kubantu baseMzantsi Afrika malunga nama-853 477 eziza ezilungisiweyo. [Uwelewele]. Yes, [Ewe] kunye nezigidi ezi-2,7 zezindlu. [Kwaqhwatywa.] Sizama ukuthi ke urhulumente we-ANC sele ehambe umgama omde ukuqinisekisa ukuba abantu baseMzantsi Afrika bayaxhamla kuyo yonke le nkqubo karhulumente.
Ukusombulula enye yezi ngxaki bezixelwa apha nguMphathiswa, iingxaki ezimalunga nemingeni yeziseko eziluncedo nezophuhliso kwiSebe loHlaliswa koLuntu, urhulumente okokuqala, ukwazile ukukhupha imali esisibonelelo soPhuhliso yokuHlaliswa eziDolophini [Urban Settlements Development Grant], eza kuthi ikwazi ukuncedisa koomasipala, nakoomasipala abambhaxa, ukuqinisekisa ukuba ezi ziseko ziluncedo nezophuhliso esikhala ngazo ingxaki yazo ikwazi ukusombululeka.
Kumba wezogutyulo lwelindle emaphandleni, urhulumente ukwazile ukuba kubekho ungenelelo olwenzekayo ngenkqubo yogutyulo lwelindle emaphandleni [rural housing sanitation]. Ngoko ke, sonke apha siyabona ukuba urhulumente we-ANC uzama kangangoko anakho. (Translation of isiXhosa paragraphs follows.)
[I have already said that as from 1994 this government has managed to roll out to the people of South Africa 853 477 developed plots. [Interjections.] Yes, and 2,7 291 million houses. [Applause.] We want to say that the ANC- led government is making sure that the people of South Africa are enjoying this provision of their government.
To solve one of the challenges mentioned by the Minister here, challenges related to the Urban Settlements Development Grant within the Department of Human Settlements, the government managed to supply the Urban Settlements Development Grant to help municipalities and the metropolitan municipalities in ensuring that this infrastructure and the development that we are complaining about is addressed.
Concerning rural housing sanitation, the government managed to make an intervention through the program called rural housing sanitation. Therefore, all of us here can agree that the ANC-led government is trying by all means.]
A special presidential package initiative designed to improve the living and working conditions of workers in key mining towns has been adopted. Human Settlements has adopted an amount of R1 billion to ensure that those projects are rolled out.
The human settlements development grant has been increased by R110 million in 2014-15, and an additional R1 billion has been added for 2015-16 for the informal settlements upgrading programme in rapidly urbanising mining towns, which include Emalahleni, Govan Mbeki, Rustenburg and Steve Tshwete Local Municipalities. Provinces plan to spend R1 billion for the rental housing programme from the Human Settlements Development Grant.
It would be in the interest of the nation to point out that a further number of 9 977 households have benefited through the Enhanced Extended Discount Benefit Scheme and have secured ownership of the housing stock they have been occupying for years. In addition, about 33 000 housing units were at various levels of construction, from foundation and wall-plate level up to the roof level, as at 31 March 2013.
The only challenge facing the country is the well-located state land released to municipalities for human settlements development. The department has managed to acquire 7 477 hectares, of which the department has achieved the 2009 state of the nation address mandate of acquiring and releasing 6 250 hectares by 2014. A national upgrading programme has been established and the budget allocation for 2013-14 is R97 million.
The technical support to municipalities that is provided by the department will assist municipalities to develop municipal upgrading strategies to develop settlement upgrading plans for a predetermined number of informal settlements. The capacity development programme has been developed and the content of the programme will be further developed during the course of the year, after which it will be implemented.
Heeding the ANC's call to address bulk infrastructure challenges within the country, the ANC-led government has adopted a massive infrastructure development programme through the Presidential Infrastructure Co-ordinating Commission, PICC.
The state of the nation address, and the 2013 budget also take into consideration the implementation of 18 strategic infrastructure projects, especially in 23 districts, which will ensure the provision of water, electricity and sanitation, and this will change the lives of approximately 19 million people. [Applause.]
A few districts that will benefit - just to remind members - are John Tlaolo in the Northern Cape; Ngaka Modiri and Ruth Mompati in North West; Mopani, Greater Sekhukhune, Capricorn and Vhembe in Limpopo; in Zululand these include Amajuba, Uthukela, Sisonke and Ugu districts; in Mpumalanga it's Ehlanzeni; in the Eastern Cape they include Alfred Nzo, O R Tambo, Chris Hani, Amathole and Ukhahlamba; and Xhariep in the Free State.
Furthermore, the ANC-led government has committed itself to supplying water to 104 million households and roll-out sanitation to 2,1 million households that are still without these basic needs.
The portfolio committee has observed much progress in programmes such as housing assistance to military veterans in the Eastern Cape; the memorandum of understanding on the alignment of human settlements development grant quantum and top-up funding; the rolling out of the presidential pilot projects; and job-creation initiatives in all the provinces.
The department has undertaken a process of the recapitalisation of its development finance institutions. Part of their performance is reported as follows:
The Rural Housing Loan Fund, RHLF, was the star performer programme of the department. About 116 000 loans to rural households were disbursed. Cash disbursed in the third quarter alone was close to R41 million, compared to the R44 million disbursed in the first two quarters of the year.
However, what is important about these two institutions, the National Urban Reconstruction and Housing Agency, Nurcha, and RHLF, troubled members of the portfolio committee is the issue of the interest rates. Now we are very happy to inform this House that through our interaction with these two institutions the issue of the interest rates has been resolved.
We should commend the government on a number of progressive decisions that have been taken towards making sure that our institutions are aligned with improved service delivery. The Estate Agency Affairs Board was successfully transferred from the Department of Trade and Industry to the Department of Human Settlements via the presidential proclamation. A new dynamic and professional board has been duly appointed and this strategic organisation is now positioned and under way to make a significant contribution to the Department of Human Settlements.
We welcome the establishment of a collaborative partnership between the Department of Human Settlements and the Department of Science and Technology for the process of developing a Green Paper for Sustainable Human Settlements Development and the revision of the guidelines for human settlements planning and design.
Human settlements are not the purview of the Department of Human Settlements alone. In order to achieve the objective for sustainable integrated settlements with appropriate linkages to water, sanitation, electricity, as well as transport, schools, clinics, parks and other facilities, there is a need to collaborate with several key sector departments, provinces and municipalities. The net gain can be gauged from the co-ordination of planning and reporting on cross-cutting issues affecting Outcomes 7, 8 and 9 with regard to human settlements, housing and sanitation. Significant is the fact that the silo approach is increasingly being replaced by one of co-operation and co-ordination in planning.
South Africa needs to develop a national integrated urban development framework to assist municipalities to effectively manage rapid urbanisation.
I now come to the legislative progress achieved by the department through parliamentary processes since the beginning of the Fourth Parliament. The Portfolio Committee on Human Settlements has successfully promulgated two pieces of legislation and one set of regulations since 2009. We are very proud of the Sectional Titles Schemes Management Bill because we have seen ...
Oosomashishini bewusasaza lo mthetho kuba le yindlela iPalamente eyathatha ngayo inyathelo lokuba yenze ... [Entrepreuneurs broadcast this policy because this is the way in which Parliament takes steps to offer ...]
... consultative full participation to the rest of the communities. The Community Schemes Ombud Service Bill of 2011 was also promulgated in 2011.
The Social Housing Regulations were published after consultation with Parliament, and the Cabinet approved the Rental Housing Amendment Bill for deliberation in Parliament. The Bill is still under deliberation and it is envisaged to be passed during the 2013-14 financial year.
Households with modest means need safe and suitable housing that they can afford. When housing is affordable, low-and moderate-income families are able to put nutritious food on the table, receive the necessary medical care, and provide reliable day care for their children.
The benefits of affordable housing extend beyond its occupants to the community at large. The development of affordable housing increases spending and employment in the surrounding economy; it acts as an important source of revenue for local governments without a sufficient supply of affordable housing. Employers and entire regional economies can be at a competitive disadvantage because of their subsequent difficulty attracting and retaining workers.
The portfolio committee has come across a number of challenges such as the lack of collaborative planning between the national department and other sector departments.
Loo nto inika ubunzima kuba igunya leSebe lokuHlaliswa loLuntu lixhomekeke nakumanye amasebe ukuze libe nempumelelo. [That creates problems, because the mandate of the Department of Human Settlements depends on other departments for it to be successful.]
Other challenges are the alignment of strategic planning between municipalities and the province, such as IDP, the Provincial Spatial Development Framework and underspending by the provinces ...
... sele etshilo ke ohloniphekileyo. [ ... the hon Minister has already said that.]
Beneficiary management is also another challenge.
Yingxaki ke le kwaye siyacela ukuba sincedisana. Ukuba bakhona abantu abasuka koomasipala, abamele oomasipala kunye namaphondo masibancedise ngalo mba kuba ngowona mba uyingxaki kakhulu ... [This is a problem and we request assistance. If there are people from the municipalities, or representing municipalities and provinces, they must be assisted in this matter because this is the most difficult matter ...]
The selling of RDP houses prior to the completion of the five-year period is another challenge.
Hayi masivume isebe alisebenzanga kakuhle kulo mba wokusasazwa kweenkonzo zogutyulo lwelindle emaphandleni. Kodwa ke, okuhle kukuba ikomiti iyazazi zonke iingxaki kwaye neengxelo ziphumile ngalo mba. Kungenjalo ikomiti idlale indima enkulu ukuncedisana nesebe ekusombululeni le ngxaki. Isesemkhondweni ke. Kungekudala silinde ingxelo evela kuMphathiswa malunga nengxelo yoMphicothi-zincwadi Jikelele ngokusebenza kwale nkqubo.
Xa ndiyiqukumbela intetho yam manditsho ukuthi siyikomiti senza umbulelo kuMphathiswa, uMnu uSexwale, kunye neqela lakhe uComrade uZoe, kunye noMlawuli Jikelele ngentsebenziswano encomekayo kananjalo singabalibali oogxa bethu kumaphondo. Masitsho ukuthi siyayincoma inkxaso esithe sayifumana kumaphondo siyile komiti. Xa sifika kumaphondo size kongamela besifika kwiphondo ikhona ikomiti ikomiti esisigxina yelo phondo ihambe nathi siye koomasipala basekhaya. Xa sifika phaya bakhona oosodolophu kunye nooceba. Loo nto incedisa ekubeni ezi ngxaki sizibone kanye kanye ukwenzele ukuba sikwazi ukuzisombulula. Siyababulela oogxa bethu ngenxaxheba abathe bayidlala.
Siphinde kwakhona sibulele aBaphathiswa bamaphondo. Uyabona ke Sihlalo, le komiti yenye yeekomiti ezithe zakwazi ukuba zicele aBapathiswa bamaphondo beze apha size kuxoxa imicimbi kwaye asikhange sifumane ziingxaki. Uninzi lwaBaphathiswa belusiza sixoxe sijongane ngamehlo kodwa ekugqibeleni siphume nesisombululo. Siyababulela kakhulu ke. Makuqhubeke ke madoda kubenjalo. [Kwaqhwatywa.]
OoSodolophu kunye nooceba besele ndibabulele. Ndivumeleni ndibalule nabasebenzi besebe kuzwelonke kunye namasebe amaphondo. Hayi! Bayasive isabhokhwe. Hayi! siyabanyathela. Siyabulela ke ngokuthi basinyamezele kuba kaloku xa kusetyenzwa akumnandanga. Akumnandanga xa sibona izinto ezingekho ntle kodwa siyababulela ngokuthi basinyamezele kwaye iingxelo bayazizisa - ndikhumbula umama uNjobe esithi, "Zange ndiyibone mna ikomiti ehlala iintsuku ezisi-8 ngeveki". Ngoko ke siyababulela ngokuba besinyamezele kuba besifuna ulwazi ngelo xesha. Ndibulela nakubasebenzi bePalamente ngokubanzi negqugula kunye namaLungu ePalamente axhasa ezinye iikomiti. (Translation of isiXhosa paragraphs follows.)
[Let us admit that the department did not perform well in the delivery of sanitation services in the rural areas. However, the committee is aware of the challenges and reports have been issued in this regard. Maybe the committee has played a major role in helping the department in resolving the challenges. It is still on the right track. Shortly we are going to get a report from the Minister in connection with the report of the Auditor- General about the relief brought by this programme.
I want to conclude by saying that as the committee we thank the Minister, Mr Sexwale, and his team, Comrade Zoe and the director-general for their highly appreciated co-operation, and we must not forget our colleagues in the provinces. Let us also mention that we appreciate the support we received as this committee. When we arrived in the provinces for oversight, we always find the standing committee members of the provinces there already and they would go with us to the local municipalities. When we arrive there, mayors and councillors would also be there, waiting. That is helping us in solving the challenges and we solve them together. We thank our colleagues for the role they played.
We also thank the premiers of the provinces. Chairperson, this committee is one of those that manage to request the MECs to come forward so that we can engage each other and we did not encounter any problems. Most of the MECs were present and we engaged with them face to face and finally came up with solutions. We appreciated that more than anything. Let us continue with the good work. [Applause.]
I have already thanked the mayors and the councillors. Allow me to mention the staff members of the department, nationally and within the provincial departments. Oh yes! They feel the pressure. Oh yes! We are on their case. We thank them for their patience with us, because when work is being done, there is no pleasure. It is disheartening to see unsatisfactory things, but we thank them for their patience with us and their report-back. I remember Mrs Njobe saying, "I have never seen a committee that sits for eight days in a week." So we thank them for being patient with us, because we wanted information at that time. I also thank Parliament for supporting other committees.]
The ANC supports the Budget Vote. I thank you. [Time expired.] Applause.]