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Hulene. File photo: DW
The families living near the Hulene dump in Maputo where, on February 19, 2018, 17 people died, have still not been resettled. The former mayor says the delays are the result of administrative procedures.
A year has gone by since the rubbish dump in the Hulene neighbourhood on the outskirts of the Mozambican capital collapsed after heavy rains, but families whose homes were destroyed continue to live in rented accommodation paid for by municipal entities.
Posulane, in the district of Marracuene, was chosen to resettle the families, but there is still no signs of construction work under way, leaving residents complaining about the slowness in the process.
“Living in a rented house is not the same as living in your own house,” Elias Matias, one of those affected, says, asking that the matter be addressed as soon as possible. “I used to plant vegetables and raise animals at my old house. I could do a lot of shopping, but there’s no room here,” he says.
Simão Matusse, another former Hulene resident, complains that he has no information about the future. “So far they have not said anything yet. We have no hope since they said they are cancelling the rent money because it is paid every two months and we do not know what will happen,” he says. The last tranche of the rent was paid in December 2018.
Will new mayor solve the problem?
Ernesto Pelembe, another resident, does not know if the new team led by mayor Eneas Comiche will solve this problem. “Will [the team] coming in continue to look after us? We are all in trepidation because we do not know where we are going, we only know where we left off,” he says.
Speaking in an interview at the end of January, former Maputo mayor David Simango reassured the affected families, saying that although he was no longer the mayor of the municipality, he would not “leave this matter unsolved”.
“The commitments we made – to pay rent subsidies, build decent homes and deliver the keys into the hands of each of the persons affected, properly identified – this will happen,” he promised.
David Simango says the construction of the new homes in Marracuene was behind schedule because of administrative procedures.
“We launched the tender for the construction of houses. The tender was delayed because there were complaints from competitors, but then that was dealt with, and we are currently waiting for court authorisations for work to begin.”
So far, the new team at the Maputo Municipal Council has not commented on the matter.Source: Deutsche Welle
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