Fighters in the House, ...
... izivakashe zethu kanye nama-fighter emakhaya ngiyanibingelela.
On 28 July, the United Nations General Assembly through Resolution 64/292 recognised the human right to water and sanitation and acknowledged that clean drinking water and sanitation are essential to the realisation of all human rights. Our Constitution explicitly states that everyone has the right to water.
Minister, it is your department that is mandated to realise the basic human right of access water and sanitation for our people. But for the last 25 years, your department has failed to realise this mandate. This is because of corruption, incompetence and an unwillingness to reverse four centuries of dispossession and the unequal allocation of resources. Because of the failures of your department only 46% of households in South Africa have access to piped water. That means that for more than half our population cannot even get up and turn on the taps in their homesteads have to risk going outside.
In communities like Khayelitsha in the Western Cape, Giyani in Limpopo, Qwaqwa in the Free State and Jozini in KwaZulu-Natal people are going without consistent running water and either rely on water trucks or communal taps and rivers in their communities. In Jozini there is no reason our people not to have water. There is a dam in
the community, but the rights to that water were granted to a white family during apartheid.
In the year 2015 the former Minister and Bosasa employee Nomvula Mokonyane went to Jozini and promised the people that the dam would go from the single purpose use, to multipurpose use, and that the water from the dam must be used to provide services to the communities. It is now four years later and the people of Jozini still have no water. Why is the government allowing whites to own private dams, while the black majority does not have access to water? Wherever our people are having trouble accessing water, you also find that they are not being provided with dignified sanitation.
In communities and schools across the country, our people are relieving themselves in pit toilets, in the bushes and in buckets. According to Statistics SA only 61% of South African households use a flushing toilet connected to the public sewerage system. We are still faced with the sad reality of children dying because they have drowned in the pit toilets.
The government's inability to deliver basic water and sanitation, is worsening a global and local water scarcity that is only going to
continue. In Cape Town, we have seen the first signs and this water crisis has spread to Makhanda and other parts of the Eastern Cape, not forgetting Vaal. You know what's going on in the Vaal.
That is why government must not only increase access to water infrastructure, but it must also upgrade and maintain the current infrastructure. Currently Minister, because of the crumbling water infrastructure, we are losing one trillion litres of water due to leaks annually. Water that could be treated and recycled back into the water system is being wasted. The government must fix leaks, and there must be functional water treatment plants in every province. But this cannot happen if corruption is allowed to continue in the department without consequences for those who are involved.
It is because of corruption that the people of Giyani still do not have water. It is because of corruption that the R3 billion allocated in fixing water leaks has yielded no results, and has led to billions in unauthorised expenditure. It is because of corruption that the Bucket Eradication Programme ran out of a budget without meeting its targets. It is because of corruption and mismanagement that funding allocated to the department is now being used for overdraft payments, instead of for service delivery.
The government committed to service delivery could ensure that each household has access to house sanitation and hot running water by 2024. This is not difficult, and for this to happen the following steps must be taken. Ten thousand artisans must be employed to repair and construct the country's water infrastructure, and also expand it. These artisans must be plumbers and engineers, who repair leaks, build new piping and construct new facilities.
The backlog of 210 000 kilometers of piping for water and sanitation must be prioritised and every community must be connected to the water and sanitation plumbing system. All schools must be prioritised for flushing toilets and the department must work with the Minister of Basic Education.
All water treatment plants must be repaired, and new ones must be built. Minister, it is these sorts of plans and programmes which will provide water and sanitation to our people and guarantee them the dignity promised to them in the Constitution. However, they do not find expression in this Budget Vote. That is why the EFF rejects the Budget Vote, Minister. [Applause.]
MR T SIMMERS (WESTERN CAPE MEC-HUMAN SETTLENTS): Hon chairperson,
the National Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation,
hon Sisulu, the Deputy Ministers, hon Members of the NCOP and fellow South Africans. Firstly, let me take this opportunity to thank you for affording me the opportunity to delivery my first speech as the Western Cape MEC- Human Settlements in the NCOP today.
Dit is egter ook 'n jammerte vir my dat daar 'n konstante selektiewe narratief is dat die Wes-Kaap se DA-beheerde regering nie vir sy mense omgee nie, want dit is van alle waarheid ontneem. Ek gaan hierdie individue, wat hierdie narratief konstant dryf, aanraai om in Riebeek-Wes 'n draai te gaan maak, waar ek drie weke terug vir 'n 92-jarige voormalige plaaswerker en sy 85-jarige vrou, vir die eerste keer, trotse huiseienaars gemaak het. Gaan vra vir hulle of hierdie regering nie omgee nie.
Miskien moet hierdie selfde individue wie hierdie narratief dryf ook 'n draai gaan maak in Wupperthal, waar ek Maandag 53 tydelike residensile wonings oorhandig het, nadat 'n katastrofiese wegholbrand hierdie Morawiese sendingstasie amper verwoes het. Vra vir hulle of hierdie regering nie omgee nie.
Chairperson, it is time that people need to get their facts straight before criticising this DA governed province, as we are and will continue to make intangible and empowering difference in the lives of our people, in fact since 2009 until the end of last year, this provincial government delivered just under 213 000 quality housing opportunities to its people and the current projects in our pipeline by 2022 we will deliver a further 105 000 quality housing opportunities through our various catholic and provincial prioritise projects across our province.
Chairperson, to ensure that we are going to achieve this 105 000 target, we have introduce three radical drivers: firstly is to radically accelerate the delivery of housing opportunities across our province. Secondly to radically implement the implementation of innovative solutions to ensure that number one can happen and last not least an indicated approach to human settlements. Now chair, radical does not equate to be violent, militant, [16:00:34] or rude.
Instead it means there will be a significant push towards getting our people into houses, but also towards giving people ownership through title deeds of these houses. As in both instances not only are we creating a better life for our people but we are restoring the dignity of our residents given our past and its injustices.
Chairperson, since we coming to be the Provincial Minister just over six weeks ago I have already handed out just over 200 housing units and 52 title deeds. One of our catholic project which is Forest Village which is in Easter River, we are at the moment handing over an average of 25 housing opportunities every second week.
Secondly, hon Chair, at our Belhar [16:01:22] which is also a catholic project by 2021 [16:01:26] 1225 housing opportunities. We are making significant strives to ensure the [16:01:31] programme actually is the success in our province. We recently 245 units have been already handed over, 241 of these units are [16:01:27] and by the end of this month a further 32 [16:01:28] units will be handed over.
Chair, I was quite supportive when I heard the Minister talking about our rural areas because I come from the rural areas of the Western Cape. So as part of our small town regeneration programme I have actually prioritise seven non metro projects and they are firstly the metro grounds in George, where we will [16:02:06] nearly 700 housing opportunities, [16:02:07] which is close 600 housing opportunities, [16:02:07] which is in Kannaland which is close to 400 housing opportunities, Vredenburg which is in Saldahna Bay, [16:02:11] which is in Mossel Bay one and half thousand housing
opportunities, [16:02:10] which is just outside of Oudtshoorn which in nearly 800 housing opportunities and the seventh one is Houston [16:02:31] where we will heal close to 7400 housing opportunities.
This is [16:02:40], this is the caring government, this is the DA government delivery. But chairperson to further accelerate this delivery we will need to focus on certain prioritise, firstly is to direct more resources for the upgrading of our informal settlements and the provision of basic services. Secondly is to increase the affordable and gap housing opportunities across our province.
Along with our [16:03:03] programme and lastly and thirdly prioritising the most deserving people in relation to the allocation of [16:03:05] houses and its no use that we deliver units but the true beneficiaries actually don't obtain these units therefore we will closely monitor that elderly people get these units, people with disabilities, child headed households those who have been the longest on our waiting list and finally backyarder's more particularly backyarder's which are house headed by single mothers.
Ek het gehoor hoe ons agterplaasbewoners vir baie jare vir hulp vra en ek het onmiddellik ingestem om in ons provinsie hieraan aandag te gee.
English: A few weeks ago I issued a executive directive to all municipalities in the Western Cape that from now on backyarder's must also be a priority. This means that when ever we identify beneficiaries from the municipal or provincial waiting list backyarder's must be prioritised, as we will work on a 50:50 split within other criteria. So while other have been talking about prioritising backyarder's for many years this DA government has made it official, Chairperson.
Chairperson my colleague the Provincial Minister of Transport and Public Works and I will also engaging about releasing provincial owned land and building which are close to transport the [16:04:20] and economic opportunities and I[16:05:31] our discussions are fruitful and we are making significant progress ...
..., want ons is daartoe verbind om mense se lewens te verbeter.
...and through you chair, I would like to suggest to Minister Sisulu actually encourage her colleague the hon Minister of Public Works, Infrastructure, Patricia De Lille to also release the five tracks of allocated national owned land which is Eesterplate, Denel, Collenburg, Youngs field, and Wingfield obviously along with a budget for human settlement development as these key properties can generate 93000 housing opportunities if we can get the land from National government.
Chairperson, we live in the Fourth Industrial Revolution and in this week as the province launch our exciting youth competition to get the young people to design a [16:05:13] or [16:05:15] of a housing APP for citizen to actively and easily access information on government housing assistance and within the next six months to ensure that our beneficiary list is totally electronic, transparent and accessible to all beneficiary in this province.
Ons maak ook gebruik van alternatiewe boutegnologie, want in ons Mosselbaaiprojek gaan daar binnekort, die einde van die jaar, 150 eenhede voltooi word. Ons pluk reeds die vrugte van die vyf bestaande eenhede, deur die impak van alternatiewe boutegnologie te monitor. Hierdie eenhede kos tans goedkoper om te bou. Die
beginstigter spaar alreeds op kraggebruik en die impak op die omgewing is ook baie laer, wat natuurlik belangrik is vir volhoubare ontwikkeling.
English: Chairperson, furthermore, we will be also be embarking on creating a smart township concept. These settlements which are homeownership driven and inclusive of all the relevant services will be piloted throughout the province in our exciting projects in our green fields.
The process to establish these innovative integrated townships are already under way and we are looking forward to comments with these pilot project in due course. But all of these can only work chairperson if our citizens takes personal responsibility and we are currently encouraging responsible citizenship amongst our residents particularly for those who are in need of housing assistance from government.
Ons dring dus daarop aan dat persone by hul plaaslike behuisingskantore moet registreer. Indien hulle oor die jare geregistreer het, moet hulle seker maak dat hule kontakbesonderhede dieselfde is, sodat hulle ook van die geleenthede gebruik kan maak.
English: In conclusion, as the Western Cape we are committed to accelerate the human settlement delivery. Utilising technology by also promoting social inclusion through the development of integrated resilient and sustainable human settlements all of this in open society. I thank you chairperson.
The DEPUTY MINISTER OF HUMAN SETTLEMENTS, WATER AND SANITATION (Mr M
D Mahlobo): Hon Chairperson and Deputy Chair of the NCOP, Minister Sisulu, Minister Didiza, Deputy Minister Tshwete, Deputy Minister Skwatsha, MECs who are here, the leadership of SA Local Government Association, Salga, our Chair of the Select Committee, Comrade Dodovu, other members, and the leadership of human settlements, water and sanitation, in the next few days South Africa shall commemorate the 63rd anniversary of the historic women's march held that was held on 9 August 1956. Where in about 20 000 brave women marched to the Union Buildings protesting against the pass laws that were being extended to black women. One of the most important things that we could take out of those women is what they wrote in their petition and I quote:
We shall not rest until we have won for our children their fundamental rights of freedom, justice and security.
We will want to salute the mothers Charlotte Maxeke, Lilian Ngoyi, Helen Joseph, Albertina Sisulu, Ruth First, Winnie Madikizela- Mandela, Portia Shabangu, Nokuthula Simelane, Edna Molewa and many unsung, heroines of our struggle for freedom.
A lot has been achieved in the last 25 years in changing the lives of our people. However, the ANC government is the first to admit that more still needs to be done. We do not want to come and claim as the hon MEC same as you are claiming. Do not politicise issues of service delivery.
Chairperson, in the last few days I was in Swartlands, they thought their waste water treatment works was the best in the province, but the sewerage was running into the stream. Therefore, we all have problems. We all live in the glass house.
The issues that are raised by the chair of our select committee, Chairperson, we want to confirm that the Minister has decided to actually intervene on the difficulties we shared with you. [Applause.]
The administration is being stabilised. There is an Acting Director- General, DG, Comrade Mbulelo Tshangana. He has been taken away from
human settlements to stabilise, so that we do not have a holy hood. The issues around financial problems we have spoken to, we are the ones who disclosed in the select committee. There is a financial turnaround plan. A team working with Treasury and the Auditor- General working with the acting DG will deal with the issues. Issues of malfeasance, corruption, disciplinary matters will move with speed. [Applause.]
We also have to indicate that Minister Sisulu has spoken about the question of the staff morale that there are good men and women at particular levels. We need to be able to encourage them, but more importantly, the integrity and the morality of those who work in the system, we are going to vet everybody. So that nobody can cast aspersion on them, because we thought that everybody is a rotten apple. That is not the reality.
The importance of water is best captured by Mehmet Murat Ildan and I quote:
For every drop of water you waste, you must know that somewhere on earth someone is desperately looking for a drop of water.
Water is the most critical issue of our lifetime and our children's lifetime. The health of our waters is the principal measure of how we live on our land. We live in a country where water is scarce, that and we agree with that one. The Ministry working with the sector, we want to ensure water security for our people so that there is enough water to meet their basic needs, that industry can invest knowing that there is a reliable water supply. However, we cannot guarantee rain for our farmers. However, we can ensure that the irrigation schemes and suppliers are predictable and well managed.
According to Statistics SA, if we tell our true story, we have done well over the last 25 years. The general household survey that was conducted last year indicates that at least 89% of our households have access to water in their own dwellings. We also know that there is about 46,3% of households that have water in their own dwellings while 28,5% access water in their own yards. We have about 2,7% of households that they still have to fetch water in stagnant dams, pools, rivers and streams. As well as compared to 4,3% in 2003. And we are not hiding these difficulties.
That is why the Minister says, three million additional South Africans, we still have to reach them. We know that there are those
that do not have water over some number of days, it has caused certain disruptions and we understand the plight of our people. The plan that we have presented says that, we are making the right investments, innovation and management decisions; we just have to do them on time.
On the question that is being raised of the no availability of the source, while the infrastructure is there, the Minister has directed us to improve our water resource planning so that we can confirm whether ground water will be there, whether surface water will be there, whether wastewater would be able to be reused, so that when we do infrastructure investment our own modelling and water resource planning should be able to respond to that. For we know too, that for any development to happen, there has to be the confirmation of the source.
We have also been told by the Minister that we have to use technology. The Fourth Industrial Revolution is already happening in the water business. In our already planning business, we are using complex hydrological models, which can predict the weather and system that can we have water for the next three to six years. We do have it. We are also using satellite images. We are using the big
data analysis. We can also use earth observation into satellite remote sensing. More impotently, we need to use climate focus.
On the question of sanitation, there are these 14 point something million South Africans that do not have sanitation facilities. However, to have sanitation facilities, we must be able to use water being provided. In the mean time when water is not there, there are other sanitation technologies that we must use. Low or no water flushing, waste is locally treated and therefore nonsewered, and we can also beneficiate waste.
Our commitment on eradicating the buckets in the Northern Cape and the Free State remains for those formal settlements. We must be able to qualify formal settlements which are an outstanding backlog.
We are also proceeding that we have no luxury of water. Our water conservation and demand management measures must proceed. Therefore the question of operation and maintenance of our infrastructure is high on the agenda and many institutions are struggling.
The question of education and awareness is important. How do we change our own behaviour on the limited resource?
We must also use the waste water, but more importantly even the acid mine drainage. Increase the groundwater extraction especially for rural communities and use new technologies. Municipalities around coastal towns - the question of desalination are an option, but then there is a catch 22 about the availability of energy and the expensive nature of technology.
On the question that we are exploiting our resources and we are causing problems in our rivers, the Minister has spoken about the problem of water quality. Pollution by industries, agriculture and all other users, including municipalities. She has directed us that from 1 August, we are going to increase our inspectors on the ground. We are not going to increase our inspectors on the ground, but we are also going to increase our eyes in the sky, so that we can deal with what happened there in Mthatha, where we were on 22 July with Mama Pam Tshwete and others. These polluters have nowhere to hide. They will pay and we will prosecute them. [Applause.]
We have taken that the Blue Drop must be back.