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MEC Sauls-August calls for partnerships to address Eastern Cape poverty

Aug 31, 2017
MEC Sauls-August calls for partnerships to address Eastern Cape poverty

Eastern Cape MEC for Human Settlements, Helen Sauls-August, on Thursday called for service delivery partnerships to break the cycle of poverty in the Eastern Cape.

Her call comes after a report on Poverty trends and Levels in South Africa and the Eastern Cape from Statistics South Africa that was released last week showed that a bigger population in the province is living in poverty.

“This should spur both government, private sector into action that would turn the tide against the increasing levels of poverty. The poverty levels have a direct link and bearing on our human settlements development programmes, so as the department we need to take note and come up with strategies that will alleviate the desperate situation,” Sauls-August urged.

She said the Eastern Cape Department of Human Settlements was more than just construction of housing units.

“It has a bigger responsibility of ensuring that its programme must also respond to the triple challenge of inequality, poverty and unemployment. This is why the department seeks service delivery partnerships to address and provide basic necessities for the family we build houses for. 

"There is an immediate need to combine efforts to help in the most distressing situations using Human Settlements Delivery as a vehicle for social transformation, “she said.

Human Settlements Development Projects built in both rural and urban areas have been able to change the living conditions for thousands of underprivileged people in the Eastern Cape, but the report released last week indicate that more work needed to be done to turn the tide against increasing poverty levels in the Province.

She said Service Delivery Partnerships are a basis of our commitment to fight poverty, unemployment and inequalities in our communities, but her department needed other role players to come on board.

In 2011, the department established a special directorate to handle and FastTrack housing needs for the destitute people in the province.

Through this programme, the department has had partnerships with the Departments of Safety& Liaison, Department of Agriculture & Agrarian Reform and Social Development which has helped many families living below the poverty line.