The Nelson Mandela Foundation hosted the Inclusive Housing Dialogue in Houghton, Johannesburg on Thursday aimed at addressing the proposal by the City of Johannesburg into inclusive housing.

The MMC for Housing in the city Meshack van Wyk outlined the aim of the proposal saying its purpose is to bring community members closer to their areas of employment and basic service providers.

Van Wyk says, “We have different programmes that we embark on. Because, if you look at how the houses are built, it’s away from the workplace, it’s away from transport and people are spending a lot of money. This prompted us as the Housing Department to look at a policy on inclusivity so that we bring our people closer to their workplace, closer to one another where we begin to build communities instead of building segregated groups.”

The Foundation also used the occasion to launch the Mandela Initiative Report, which plans to assist in combating housing and poverty dilemmas in South Africa.

CEO of the Nelson Mandela Foundation Sello Hatang says, “There is a need to transform urban spaces so as to make them more accessible and inclusive to the poor and marginalised. The urgency for this transformation has been accelerated by high profile land occupations transpiring across South African cities as well as by the efforts of civil society movements and activists.”

Hatang adds, “Urban sprawl has in turn led to spacial isolation and more fear has crept into our societies as communities move physically apart. Aparthied, in its various manifestations continues to hurt us and haunt South Africa.”