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On Friday night, 23 September 2016, I attended the Western Cape Govan Mbeki Awards hosted by the provincial Department of Human Settlements, where the City of Cape Town received recognition for some of our key projects completed over the last year.

Out of seven categories, the City of Cape Town walked away as the winners of four categories and the runners-up for two categories. The City came out tops in the following categories:
· Best Community Residential Units for Langa

· Best Institutional Housing Project for Harmony Village

· Best Enhanced People’s Housing Process Project for the Bardale development in Mfuleni

· Best Social Housing Project for the Scottsdene rental estateIt is truly an honour to receive commendation for delivering good quality, affordable housing opportunities for those who need it the most.

We especially take pride in the award we received for our Community Residential Units (CRU) in Langa in light of last week’s volatility. This achievement validates the work we have done to uplift and improve the lives of the residents who qualify and reside in that area.

The Langa CRU is our first project to successfully display the implementation of the Hostels Transformation Programme using the CRU Policy within the Western Cape. The first phase comprised the relocation of 463 households who were living in migrant labour hostel conditions in Langa. The vacated hostel areas and informal settlements were demolished and the land cleared to make room for Phase 2 of the projects which will commence in due time.

This is a R510 million investment that the City has made to provide housing opportunities for more than 1 300 families over the next three years. It is therefore a lie to say that no development has taken place or will take place in Langa, as claimed by the thugs who caused so much violence and destruction last week.

Receiving the award for the Best Community Residential Units in Langa is an acknowledgement that the City is delivering the best possible service to the residents. We will continue with the good work that we have been doing, and will not tolerate any individuals who want to backtrack on the progress we have made possible with the residents who have been willing to work together with us.

We will now go on to represent the Western Cape at the national Govan Mbeki Awards in the categories which we have won. We look forward to participating and hope to walk away as victors once more.

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