Pretoria - Stakeholders have applauded the community of Rama City in the north of Pretoria for remaining steadfast in its commitment to unity and for steering positive development in the community for future generations.
The community of the Rama City housing development finally unveiled roads, a recreational park, and saw the electrification of houses during their annual meeting over the weekend.
Abel Tau, the Tshwane MMC for Housing and Human Settlements, said it was heart-warming to see the amount of development that was gradually taking place in the community despite the challenges presented to everyone by the Covid-19 pandemic.
Tau said although it had been a difficult two-year period, in particular for the community who had to make do with no electricity, sewage or proper roads for close to 1 000 people, it was encouraging to see what was finally taking place.
"What is happening here is heart-warming as we want to develop and build cities and communities where people can live, work, play and create lives. Rama City is a good model of what can be built working together.
“Future generations should look back at the work that was done now and be able to say that there was hope after the new dispensation, and new communities that they’re proud to be a part of where they can call home.”
Tau said he was pleased to attend the momentous occasion, as bringing about sustainable housing opportunities was what they had assured Tshwane residents they would prioritise upon taking office.
He said the success of the community was a good model of how partnerships between the private sector and the government could yield positive results.
Most importantly, he said, it was a good model for other informal areas around Tshwane on how unity and remaining committed to a solid plan could spur the government and other stakeholders to come on board to bring about much-needed changes.
“This community demonstrated that among yourselves you can make a meaningful impact.
“The biggest downfall of many struggling communities is because everyone pulls in their own direction, and they then wait for the government to come and do things.
“But when you see clear plans that are measurable it’s easier to invest in those spaces as the government knows those won’t go to waste,” Tau said.
Community and Social Development MMC Peggy de Bruin commended the work done by the community, saying she was proud of how well organised and functional the structures set up by the community to champion development in the community were.
De Bruin said even though the area still lacked proper ablution facilities which she hoped would be addressed promptly, she was pleased that members were not waiting for officials to address challenges that cropped up.
The R10 billion integrated housing development near Rosslyn Industrial area was officially launched by Gauteng Premier David Makhura in 2018, and was pegged to revive hopes for locals to have a vibrant economy and more jobs in their area.
The development, announced to be funded through private investment, is due to see more than 17 000 housing units – which include RDP houses, student accommodation and bond houses – being built.
In addition, it is to include seven primary schools, four secondary schools, one clinic, 14 parks, one shopping centre, 38 industrial parks and one municipal office.
Collen Mashawana, local businessman and founder of the Collen Mashawana Foundation which donated the recreational park, said they were pleased that with the support of the community there were now 2 500 houses built and close to 7 500 people living in the area.