Carte Blanche: Shack City in Johannesburg

Sunday, 31 March’s episode of Carte Blanche investigates the one-room shacks made of paper-thin iron sheets that the City of Johannesburg is building for those who have been displaced.

But what looks like a cheaply built infrastructure has a multi-million rand price tag.

The City of Johannesburg (COJ) is building an informal settlement for displaced residents.

With a 500 000 housing backlog, the city has repeatedly failed to deliver on its housing projects, leaving thousands of residents without adequate homes.

Last year, when 77 people died in a massive blaze at the Usindiso building downtown, the city’s skewed priorities and lack of preparedness were exposed.

Every municipality is required to provide temporary shelters for residents caught in a major disaster – but the COJ hadn’t made any arrangements.

So, it built 300 one-room, paper-thin tin shacks at an eye-watering R4.2 million.

But should shacks cost ratepayers millions of rands?

For more on this story, don’t miss this Sunday’s episode.

Carte Blanche first aired in 1988

Carte Blanche is a South African investigative journalism television series that airs on M-Net every Sunday at 19:00.

Its first episode aired on 21 August 1988 and over the last 34-plus years has earned credibility among South African viewers for its investigation into corruption, consumer issues, and current events.

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