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Transforming Society

Securing Rights

Restoring Dignity

Public Protector, SAHRC make damning findings about Alex service delivery

09 July 2021

Mkhwebane launched a joint investigation with the South African Human Rights Commission into maladministration in the township in 2019.

In April that year, residents took to the streets of the township to demand an end to the building of illegal structures and a lack of service delivery.

The shutdown headed to Sandton, where the movement marched to the regional offices to hand over a memorandum of demands to then Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba.

Close to a dozen were arrested for the sporadic protests.

Mkhwebane probed claims of maladministration in the allocation of resources to the area, making damning findings against local government.

“The investigation revealed that the management and delivery of bulk municipal services in Alexandra by the City of Johannesburg does not accord with the duties imposed on it by the Constitution and the applicable law,” Mkhwebane said on Friday.

Mkhwebane made the same finding about housing.

“In essence, the community stated that the provision of housing remains woefully inadequate and manifests itself in the following socio-economic challenges within Alexandra: the ever mushrooming of illegal structures on every open piece of land, demolitions, illegal evictions and congestions; overcrowding in the hostels and lack of maintenance.

“The investigation further revealed that the enforcement of the law in Alexandra by the SAPS and JMPD does not accord with the duties imposed on it by the Constitution and the applicable law,” Mkhwebane added.

“We found that the provision of social services in Alexandra by the Gauteng Department of Social Development does not accord with the duties imposed by the Constitution and the applicable law. The investigation revealed inadequate provision of social welfare services to the people of Alexandra.”

Mkhwebane detailed the remedial action to be taken by the city.

She further called for Gauteng Premier David Makhura to bring in the Special Investigating Unit (SIU) to probe the controversial Alexandra Renewal Project that allegedly saw over R1 billion in regeneration funds go missing.

“The premier must further facilitate an overall multidisciplinary approach and collaboration between provincial and a local spheres of government for an ultimate realisation and improvement of service delivery issues in Alexandra.

“Lastly, we make a recommendation in pursuit of section 6(4)(c)(ii) of the Public Protector Act that the Head of the Directorate of Priority Crimes Investigations (DPCI/Hawks) must consider a criminal investigation where it appears crimes have been committed in relation to the Alexandra Renewal Project,” said Mkhwebane.

Mkhwebane admitted there was headway made in addressing some of the shortcomings.

“For instance, a water pump and water tankers have already been installed at Helen Joseph Women’s and Madala Men’s Hostels, the broken fence at the cemetery has been replaced and refuse collection, clearing of illegal dumping and street cleaning take place daily, 7 days a week.”

Source: Jacaranda FM

The South African Human Rights Commission.

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The Human Rights Commission is the national institution established to support constitutional democracy. It is committed to promote respect for, observance of and protection of human rights for everyone without fear or favour.

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