GKM Mayor, Councillor MNL Madikizela announced the construction of the new homes during the Operation Mbo Programme held in Franklin recently.


MORE than 300 RDP homes will soon be built for the community of Franklin in Ward 2, near Kokstad as part of meeting the accommodation demand owing to the rapid population increase in the area.

The Greater Kokstad Municipality Mayor, Councillor MNL Madikizela made the announcement to build the RDP homes during the Operation Mbo Programme held in Franklin recently.

His announcement coincided with the visit by the KwaZulu-Natal MEC for the Department of Public Works and Human Settlements, Sipho "KK" Nkosi in Kokstad where he handed over title- deeds to more than hundred beneficiaries. During the handover the MEC also announced the construction of yet another more than 1000 RDP homes expected to commence in April, 2024.

Operation Mbo is a Government Programme, working in conjunction with Operation Sukuma- Sakhe, that encourages communities to work closely with the government to overcome social challenges so that those who can be able to do for themselves in terms of food sustainability could freely do so or they can be assisted where it is needed.

Government departments together with the Greater Kokstad Municipality brought various services to the community of Franklin as the area is distanced from the town of Kokstad where all the services could be found.

Nonetheless, this does not at all mean there are no services in the area, but this was a strategic move to monitor government services and to demonstrate the government sector departments' effectiveness to serve communities in the area.

Speaking during the operation, the GKM Mayor, Cllr Madikizela revealed that out of more than 1000 houses that would be built in Kokstad, the Municipality will provide accommodation to the community of Franklin by building them 350 RDP homes since the town's population is fast-growing with many people coming to the municipal area to look for job opportunities.

“This is part of our government programmes to promote dignity by ensuring that our people have decent shelter and they also own their houses regardless of being employed or not…” said Cllr Madikizela.

He added that as the government they are aware of the challenges of joblessness in times of the fourth industrial revolution, where technology seems to be taking over the jobs since private companies  and organisations have been hit hard by the economic downturn, choosing to use technologically based solutions instead of retaining human capital.

“Tough times are yet to vanish but we are doing the best we can to fight poverty and joblessness and we are still appealing to our communities to work the land as agriculture is another form of printing money through your hands and promoting food security,” said Cllr Madikizela.

He added they will continue building houses for the impoverished communities, electrify them and  create jobs through promoting industrialization.

“Even though I am not an expert in psychology, I can assure you that some of the social ills that are a result of gender- based violence are caused by the depression caused by poverty and unemployment. It was for this reason that we decided to roll up our sleeves and come to you to listen to your challenges, and to try to fast-track those that are life threatening,” said Mayor Madikizela.  

He also added that communities should take education seriously and learn skills that would match the current technological needs to overcome the current economic downturn.

Government departments made their presentations in the process further enlightening the communities with opportunities at their disposal.  Some of the important factors raised was that the local clinic will open 24 hours and doctors will continue visiting the area on Mondays and Wednesdays.

The Department of Correctional Services also demonstrated that they are not only responsible for looking after criminals but are also building houses for the poor families with the small budget they have. The department also demonstrated the dangers of crime and drugs especially amongst the youth. 


By Andile Moshoeshoe