The long wait for a new home

Right: Funeka Kotyu stands inside her unfinished house. She alleges it has been six months since the Mvumelwano Housing Project started the construction.

Makhaza resident Funeka Kotyu has lambasted the Mvumelwano Housing Project for dragging its feet in finishing the building of her house, accusing those involved in the project of being “inconsiderate” and “incompetent”.

The 37-year-old mother of two told Vukani that in October, last year, she had been instructed by the project to move from her plot so construction on her house could start. She was over the moon as she had longed for a house.

However, her joy was short-lived. Six months later and with winter rains looming she is still waiting for the houss which is far from being complete.

Ms Kotyu blamed the builders for delays, saying they often worked for two or three weeks and the disappeared for a month or more.

However, the project’s chairman Lwazi Ngwane, expressed shock that there was still a house that was incomplete.

He told Vukani that he had not received any complaints about the house and that, according to his knowledge, all the houses which were built last year had been finished and handed over to the recipients.

“I will get to the bottom of this,” he said. “I will follow it up to ascertain what caused the delay.”

A frustrated Ms Kotyu said she had tried many times to raise her concerns with project leaders, but her calls for help fell on deaf ears.

She also accused the provincial Department of Human Settlements of failing to monitor housing projects.

Ms Kotyu said when the construction of her house had started, she was told it would be completed “quickly” and had to move all her belongings to temporary accommodation where she had no electricity, toilet facilities or water. To get by, she has to ask neighbours to share these essential services with her.

They do, but sometimes they refuse. “I have to go around begging people, and others are just tired of me,” she said.

Ntomboxolo Somdaka-Makoba, spokesperson for Human Settlements MEC Bonginkosi Madikizela said the department had been unaware of the issue although inspectors had now been sent to asses the house.

“We will then be able to take a decision on this matter after we have received the findings of the inspectors,” she said.