The City of Johannesburg has stated that it is committed to providing affordable housing, but this does not extend to illegal foreign nationals.
On Monday, City of Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba said they are going to intensify raids on hijacked buildings, so they can use them to develop high rise affordable accommodation.
Karabo Tledima, City of Joburg spokesperson, says many people who end up in the hijacked building are desperate for accommodation and often get taken advantage of from slum and drug lords. She added that the City is responsible for permanent residents only, not illegal foreign nationals.
Joburg is the city of gold and people are looking for opportunities, so we have a lot of people looking for accommodation, but due to a house backlog of 300 000 we are unable to accommodate everyone.— Karabo Tledima, City of Joburg spokesperson
According to Tledima, if the City can covert hijacked buildings into high rises, it will significantly increase the amount of affordable housing that is desperately needed in the inner city.
To implement this, Tledima says the City is trying to find alternative accommodation for those already living in hijacked buildings. This is proving to be a challenge due to limited space, but the city is working on solutions, she says.
Listen to the full interview below: