Hannah Omarjee | firstname.lastname@example.org
24th May 2023 | 17:00 CAT
2 min read
The MMC and Johannesburg Social Housing Company (JOSHCO) are set to launch the Lufhereng Social Housing Project in Soweto Region D on Saturday, 27th May 2023. The project aims to tackle the housing backlog by integrating mixed-income groups and promoting socio-economic and spatial integration. Lufhereng township is situated southwest of Soweto, between the townships of Protea Glen and Slovo. Bongani Radebe, the Department’s CFO and acting CEO, discussed the project with Radio Islam International.
Radebe said the Lufhereng Project began in 2006 as a part of the government’s initiative to provide affordable housing options for low-income families and to help them move from informal settlements to proper housing. Lufhereng was designed as a mixed-income development that offers different housing options for people of all income levels. The township includes privately owned homes, affordable rental units, and the government fully subsidises social housing. On Friday, 407 units will be launched.
According to Radebe, there were some issues with the vetting process, with many people expressing dissatisfaction over the allocation process, having spent many spent years on waiting lists.
However, he says, “I’m pleased to announce that JOSHCO has got systems in place, and these systems are meant to improve and ensure that those that come into these units actually qualify to be there.”
JOSHCO uses a QR application system that requires users to scan a code with their phone and fill in additional information. The system filters requirements such as age, race, and employment status. If a person is eligible for housing, they will receive an SMS confirmation.
Radebe said, “As part of the town planning process, the requirement was that all the services that are required must be there and therefore all the amenities required for a Township must be there, so schools, clinics, etc. will be in the area.”
He is optimistic that small businesses will develop as the township grows. However, he believes it is essential that departments and other entities provide resources for funding and training small businesses. Radebe said the Lufhereng project benefits social cohesion and integration as individuals with different backgrounds and lifestyles interact in the same area.
JOSHCO is determined to enhance the quality of life for Johannesburg residents experiencing worsening living conditions. Social housing is a unique approach to housing, where rent and housing costs are determined by household income.
Listen to the full interview on Sabahul Muslim with Sulaimaan Ravat here