The Gauteng Human Settlements Department has defended its decision to cut the housing grant allocated to the City of Johannesburg.

The R180-million grant reduction for the current financial year was announced earlier this year.

The department’s Keith Khoza says the grant was decreased due to the city’s failure to pay developers for work done and to work with the department in the delivery of housing.

“We identify projects that we would agree with municipalities that they will build on behalf of the province, however in the past year Johannesburg did not spend the money that was sent to them and secondly they did not account for the money that was transferred. Now normally what we would do is you then withhold the money until they account. That is the reason behind not giving them the full grant, because they’re unable to account and unable to spend.”