Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation Minister Mmamoloko Kubayi will approach the Special Investigating Unit to probe claims of wrongdoing and corruption in her department’s entities.
“I have said that wrongdoing and corruption will be dealt with without fear or favour, and I encourage those with any evidence of wrongdoing to take the information to law enforcement agencies,” Kubayi said.
However, she said, in some of the housing boards, a destructive culture had germinated within the entities, “the culture of rumour-mongering, fictitious grievances, media leaks and unsubstantiated and frivolous whistle-blowing”.
“I have been bombarded with allegations and counter-allegations of corruption which are then leaked to the media,” she said. “What is common about these allegations is that no evidence is ever produced to support them.”
Her efforts to root out corruption had also been made difficult by the “well-entrenched patronage and corruption networks” which are putting up a fight.
She announced the appointments of boards in the Housing Development Agency, Social Housing Regulatory Authority, Community Schemes Ombud Service, Property Practitioner Regulatory Authority and National Home Builders Registration Council. Cabinet had also approved the appointments of the National Housing Finance Corporation board.
She acknowledged that the appointment of boards would not automatically bring stability to the entities, but was an important step in the right direction.
In a bid to resolve the problem of projects which had not been occupied due to lack of bulk infrastructure, she said the structure of the Human Settlements Development Grant had been reconfigured and allocation increased from 3% to 5%.
Backed by a good plan, the allocation could be increased up to 30%.
“… we will start implementing front-loading in Northern and Eastern Cape under the Infrastructure Fund, which will allow us to significantly increase the scale of housing delivery in a short space of time. [So] these provinces can start implementing their plans for the next two financial years.”