The waiting continues for fire-hit Masiphumelele residents

MMC for housing Malusi Booi said the current timeline for completion of temporary structures was between June and August - not April as officials had initially said.

Temporary homes were erected on the weekend of 9 and 10 January 2021 after a fire destroyed more than 1,000 homes in Masiphumelele just days before Christmas 2020. Picture: Lizell Persens/Eyewitness News

CAPE TOWN - Masiphumelele residents will have to wait longer than they expected to to take occupation of the permanent houses promised to them.

Thousands were left homeless and destitute following a massive fire just before Christmas. Minister Lindiwe Sisulu promised them they'd be able to move into permanent homes by April.

READ: Masiphumelele fire: As some move into temporary homes, thousands still homeless

But MMC for housing Malusi Booi on Wednesday said the current timeline for completion was between June and August.

“We anticipate that we would’ve completed those structures in six to eight months. The provincial department is currently working to source the ABT [Alternative Building Technology] company that can assist us in establishing those structures and rolling them out in various areas.”

Authorities are looking into alternative building technology to get the job done, which involves using materials other than brick and mortar to construct permanent homes.

READ: Masiphumelele residents at the ‘centre of political game’

Booi said the Masiphumlele build would be the start of a long term project.

“We’re erecting temporary structures in that area, I was on site against yesterday, that will take us two to three weeks to finalise. But parallel to that process, the ABT contractors will then come on board once they’ve been sourced.”

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