In the previous fiscal year, the Eastern Cape Humanities Department did not spend R338 million on housing development.

The funds were then transferred and redistributed to other provinces.

Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu made the announcement during her speech to the National Council of Provinces in Cape Town on Friday.

Despite the fact that 115 city districts in the eastern Cape have been designated for upgrades,

The province has 43 and 8 Townships, respectively, with two metros for upgrades: Buffalo City in East Britain and Nelson Mandela Bay in Gqeberha.

The Duncan Village Priority project in East London | Eastern Cape

Sisulu has demonstrated that the Eastern Cape is one of four provinces that do not spend; each spends R100 million on Free State and North West, and each spends R50 million on Limpopo.

According to Sisulu, the funds transferred from the four provinces were directed to Gauteng, Mpumalanga, the North Cape, and the Western Cape.

Sisulu stated that it had used sections 18 and 19 of the Revenue Act’s 2020 Division to obstruct provincial spending.

She stated that the decision will be made after she meets with and discusses recovery plans with the MECs of the provincial ministries.

When contacted for comment, the Eastern Cape Human Settlements Division blamed Covid-19’s underutilization.

“Every business operator was affected by the full lockdown between March 2020 and June 2020,” said Tabisa Poswa, Head of the Department.

The Duncan Village Priority project in East London

“For many SMEs, it was a well-known pandemic in 2020/2021 that many contractors struggled to restore their (work) operations on site for a significant period after June 2020 due to constraints on their operations, a lack of human resources, a lack of supplies, and the pandemic’s expensive health and safety requirements.”

She claimed that there was a significant delay in the delivery of building materials, which was affecting the contractors’ performance on site.

“The department was unable to achieve its objectives in key performance areas during June 2020, at the end of the second quarter of the fiscal year, because contractors were slower to resettle on site and their capacity to re-establish their personnel on site, and as a result of the impact of the new Covid Regulation on the ability of contractors to re-establish on site,” Poswa explained. ” ” ” “

It also revealed that funds were set aside for projects in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro and the District Municipality of Amathole.

Poswa said:

There was also a shortage of material supply because the manufacturers were also closed and all these industries were impacted by the new Covid regulations on occupational, health, and safety requirements. Turn-around time for material delivery was significantly increased, resulting in slower performance on sites.

Poswa claims that despite the difficult situation caused by the lock down, more than 70% of the budget was spent and held accountable.

She stated that the department was able to build 5 338 of the 6 807 housing units planned for construction.

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