“They destroyed my house”

“I used to live in a mud-house, and it was demolished by the hailstorm in 2016. I was left stranded and went to the councillor and they placed me in a temporary tent in which I lived for over three years, until the community raised funds and helped me build a 1 room house,” Solly Mohaule from Sgodi-phola near Bushbuckridge CBD said.

Solly says his house was destroyed by the human settlements department in 2015 after they promised to build him an RDP house on the site; “In the same year, they promised to build me a house on the same spot, they then hired someone to destroy the house and ever since then, they never came back.”

Surprisingly,according to Solly, the material to build his house was delivered and recollected after a short while without any valid reason.

According to the unemployed 36 year-old, life hasn’t been a smooth sailing living in the corrugated iron shack. He says he fears he might end up dying in there.

“I have been living with Solly for a very long time,” Norman Mohlala, Solly’s neighbour said. “He has a huge challenge because he doesn’t have parents and also unemployed. As a community we had decided to build him a 2-roomed house, and before we could finish up the second room, the human settlements representatives came through and we thought his life would change for the better from that moment.”

Solly further asked the Department of Human Settlements to come to his rescue before matters get out of hand.

Better Residents Association (BRA) PR councillor for ward 09 Sidney Khoza said; “It’s been a long while now since Solly asked me to come and try to assist him because the government destroyed his house without giving him an alternative place to live in. My biggest concern is that the budget had been allocated already, now I am wondering what happened. The least they (the government)could do is to find employment for him so that he may be able to provide for himself and build his own house.”

The Mpumalanga Department of Human Settlements responded in a statement, saying that his application was captured in the Department’s system in 2016, however, not approved owing to the fact that his name (identity document) was used as a dependent by a beneficiary who applied and got approval.

“The system wouldn’t allow the construction of a house under his name as it shows that he is a dependent of a successful beneficiary.” The department added.

“He is advised to visit the local municipality to address this technicality and be assisted to re-enroll his application to qualify as a stand-alone application. The Department will, however, visit him to verify and ascertain whether his ID was used in the successful application,” the further statement read.

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