On Thursday, 8 November 2018, SERI’s Director of Litigation, Nomzamo Zondo, joined Meshack van Wyk, MMC for Housing for the City of Johannesburg and Dr. Margot Rubin, Senior Researcher with National Research Foundation Research-Chair on Spatial Analysis and Planning at Wits University in a dialogue on inclusionary housing in the City of Johannesburg (the City).
The dialogue, hosted by the Nelson Mandela Foundation and the Hanns Seidel Foundation, aimed to help attendees gain a better understanding of inclusionary housing in Johannesburg and coincided with the launch of the Mandela Initiative final report on Grappling with poverty and inequality, which discusses and offers recommendations for eliminating poverty and addressing inequality in South Africa.
The City of Johannesburg is currently finalising its inclusionary housing policy. The first version of the policy, released on 28 February 2018, proposed to create more affordable housing by requiring any property development in the City consisting of 10 or more dwelling units to include at least 20% inclusionary housing and capping rentals at R2, 100 per month (not including utility bills). SERI’s submission on the draft policy welcomed the City’s attempt to provide affordable housing for poor and low-income families but noted that the policy did not cater for households earning less than R3,200 a month and that the proposed rent-caps would require poor and low-income families to spend the majority of their household incomes on rent.
In her comments, Nomzamo Zondo stressed that any inclusionary housing policy must allow for the thousands of people already living in inner-city Johannesburg to be able to access decent, affordable housing.