SERVICE DELIVERED AFTER SEVEN YEARS
By: Mbalenhle Sithebe
A fifty-year-old woman was one of the few fortunate residents to receive a temporal infrastructure to call a home after heavy storms washed away her mud house in 2007.
Masenzele Qulu was placed first preference by the ward committee of Ward 13 at Lundini, Bhakubha in the Eastern Cape. Over nine people in the ward have lost their homes due to natural disasters this past year. With four children and two grandchildren, Qulu had to survive living homeless after she lost her rondavel to natural disasters.
With no stable income she had nowhere to go and ended up living in chicken coop and moved from one deserted place to another.
“You can imagine being homeless with four children and two grandchildren under the age of six, while you have no income,” said Qulu.
The mother of four said that she depends on piece jobs and child support grant to put food on the table.
She added that she had lost hope to receiving a RDP house when she heard President Zuma referring to her as, “the five percent that could not wait for service delivery”.
It was one day a miracle happened and her neighbour landed her an old mud hut with a whole on the roof but “it was better than nothing”, said Qulu.
In 2008 ward committee Nothemba Mjila reported Qulu’s ordeal to the councillor and she was added to the list of people who needed help with homes from the government.
On the 17 of April 2014 building materials were delivered to the community hall, just after the ward committee made an announcement that the houses were coming soon.
Mjila said that the government started a project of giving people temporal infrastructures after last year’s severe disaster and Qulu was first in the list because she has been homeless for seven years.
“The temporal structures are for homeless people and people who lost their homes due to storms but the people must have a site,” said Mjila.
On the 21st of April, a temporal two room infrastructure was build next to Qulu’s fallen hut.
“I am happy that now we have a home,” said Qulu.
“I don’t remember when was the last time we slept when it rained, at least we will sleep in peace here,” she added.
Qulu is now waiting to move in her new home but she wasn’t told whether this was the final house or if she’ll still receive a brick house. Mjila couldn’t confirm that they were still going to receive permanent RDP house.