Tuesday, November 22 2022

Through Mayibongwe Maqhina 1h ago

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Cape Town – GOOD leader Patricia de Lille slammed the DA, saying it was telling “blue lies” for claiming there was a shortage of well-located land for affordable housing in Cape Town .

Since the start of the local government’s election campaign, the two parties have clashed over the release of state-owned land.

Last week, the DA called on the national government to immediately relinquish its lease for Acacia Park and other parliamentary villages, in order to provide housing for people rather than politicians.

He also called on the national government to immediately begin the process of selling, terminating leases or releasing state lands such as Ysterplaat, Wingfield, Youngsfield and Culemborg to the city of Cape Town, for development in partnership with the private sector.

On Monday, De Lille, who is also Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure, said his party supported calls by civil society for the use of large land for military purposes to be reassessed and for the land or parts of it. this is made available. for housing.

She said that as mayor of Cape Town, she answered the call. The Ministry of Defense had started to assess its operational needs.

“This work started months ago.

De Lille said the Acacia Park accommodation was for MPs who did not live in Cape Town.

“If the DA has a proposal to remove state-provided housing for civil servants, then it should be filed with the appropriate authority.

“In the case of the National Assembly, it would be the President of Parliament. I am not in a position to end this arrangement and evict the members of Parliament who use these houses. “

She said the Western Cape government has provided free housing for its prime minister and MECs.

“If the DA is serious about public office holders abandoning their state-provided housing, they haven’t demonstrated it where they rule. I have access to the Western Cape Province Real Property Registry which lists over 450 vacant properties in the custody of the provincial government.

De Lille said the city of Cape Town has thousands of plots of land ready to be used for housing.

“The claim that the city cannot provide affordable housing because it lacks land is a lie. When I was mayor, I asked for a land audit. The property management department found 3,000 properties they didn’t even know the city owned.

She said that in 2017, 11 plots of land were identified in Woodstock, Salt River and downtown for affordable housing, but were canceled after leaving the prosecutor.

But DA mayoral candidate Geordin Hill-Lewis said his party’s analysis of land controlled by De Lille and the national government showed it to be 72 times the size of all identified municipal sites combined. .

He said this would provide between 13 times and 70 times more housing for Capetonians than all city-owned sites combined.

“My commitment is firm: we will release more land owned by the city in a good location, and more quickly, to provide more affordable housing for Capetonians. But, as this analysis shows, the real potential game changer for affordable housing in Cape Town is the land controlled by Minister De Lille, ”said Hill-Lewis.

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