22 June 2012
Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale unveiled a R300-million high-rise housing project in Welkom, Free State province on Wednesday.
The project is a partnership between the government and the private sector, in response to the minister’s call for more involvement from those outside government in tackling South Africa’s housing challenges.
“This is a quality project that ensures that we give our people homes and thereby ensure them a great future,” Sewale said. “We have always called for more partnerships, and it is wonderful to see big corporates like Harmony coming to the party.”
The Masimong project consists of 461 units, 110 of which have already been completed, targeting the mine workers and residents of Masimong.
The units are divided into bachelor, one-bedroom, two-bedroom and three-bedroom units, with rental costs ranging from R500 to R1 200 per month.
The project, which is expected to be completed in November, includes a recreational centre, banks, church, creche, media centre, paraplegic workshop and places where people can do their shopping.
More than 3 000 jobs have been created during construction.
“In the past, accommodation for mine workers was inhumane – we want to bring dignity to the people and provide families with quality accommodation closer to where they work,” said the minister.
Accompanying Sexwale was Harmony Gold chairperson Patrice Motsepe, who expressed his excitement in partnering with the government in building homes for South Africans.
“No company or firm exists in a vacuum,” Motsepe said. “We are all part of the bigger picture, and if our people are not taken care of by us together with government, we will all sink.
“Business has no future if the workers do not have proper human settlements.”