MEC says RDP property owners should be allowed to sell

Beneficiaries of government houses should be allowed to sell their properties at a profit, says Human Settlements MEC Bonginkosi Madikizela.

Speaking yesterday in Mamre on the West Coast, where 365 title deeds were handed to housing beneficiaries, Madikizela said residents could use their title deeds as a "ticket to escape poverty".

He said the provincial Human Settlements Department would assist beneficiaries who wanted to sell their government houses and move elsewhere.

"We cannot have a clause preventing poor people from participating in the property market," Madikizela said.

"That's a way of integration. Some people have waited decades for their title deeds. They were given a house years ago and couldn't do anything. Now, if you want to sell and move to Rondebosch or another area, come to us, we will assist."

But 83-year-old Hermina Armoed, who was among those who received their title deeds yesterday, said she would never sell her house.

"I've waited too long for this piece of paper," said Armoed, who lives with her nephew.
She was on the province's housing waiting list for 30 years before being given a two-bedroomed house in Mamre in 2006.

"Seven years later and I have the papers to prove I'm the owner," she said. "Now I can get my will in order."

Another beneficiary, Fredrika Isaacs, moved into her government house in 2000.
"Finally, I have my title deed. It feels wonderful," she said.

During the 2013/14 financial year, Madikizela's department is expected to build 12 102 houses.
"However, I will not build houses where there is no basic infrastructure," Madikizela said. "I would rather under-deliver than build houses where there is no basic infrastructure. Our focus is on quality, not quantity. I won't be chasing numbers this year."

(Cape Argus)

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