The Western Cape government has prioritised the improvement of access to housing, the social net for the vulnerable and general safety.
Western Cape Finance MEC Ivan Meyer said this when he delivered the province’s 2017/ 2018 budget in Cape Town on Tuesday.
“Now what is left is for administrators to implement the budget of the province and improve the lives of the poor,” he said.
The provincial Treasury said the provincial government wants to upgrade the informal settlements in the Western Cape to restore people’s dignity.
The Department of Human Settlements is allocated R7.977bn over the next three years towards the creation of sustainable, integrated and resilient human settlements.
“The three priority areas include, firstly, directing more resources to the upgrading of informal settlements and the provision of basic services in order to improve living conditions of people in the informal settlements and in backyards who continue to wait for houses,” he said.
The MEC said the second priority was to increase affordable housing opportunities to provide shelter for the missing middle – those whose income is too high to qualify for low-income housing, but too low to afford a bond.
In its budget documents, the Western Cape Provincial Treasury said the Department of Social Development has been allocated R6.641bn over the next three years to provide a social security net for the poor, the vulnerable and those with special needs.
“The department will prioritise impressed access and quality of services offered, which includes amongst others, child care and protection services, care and support to families, Early Childhood Development and after school care programmes and youth social development programmes,” the provincial Treasury said.
The department of Social Development has also allocated R512 611m over the over the next three years to empower and improve the well-being of persons with disabilities.
The provincial Treasury said through public-private partnerships, the provincial government would do more in improving the lives of the poor.
“Through utilising Non-profit Organisations (NGOs), the department is able to extend the reach and spread of services in the Western Cape,” the department said.
The provincial Treasury has also allocated R302m in 2017/18, or R923 761m over a three year period, towards increasing the safety of residents in the province.
The department has developed a service delivery model called the Community Safety Improvement Partnership (CSIP) as its blueprint for increasing safety.
The key elements of the CSIP, amongst others, include the promotion of professional policing through effective oversight and ensuring that the public building and public spaces are safe.
According to the provincial Treasury, the province’s community safety department facilitates the identification of policing needs and priorities with the community police forums.
The department also monitors police conduct within the court environment to identify systemic lapses by the police, which result in failures to secure convictions in 25 areas across the Western Cape.