Shack settlements expanding

Staff Writer | Jul 21, 2019
Official figures will likely reflect a decline in South Africa’s housing conditions.

IRR CEO Dr Frans Cronje has said his colleagues will watch future housing data very closely to see to what extent the number and proportion of households living its shacks is increasing.

Dr Cronje said that it had struck IRR analysts travelling around the country how quickly many shack settlements appeared to be expanding. Data published by the IRR showed that in the first decade after 1994 the number and proportion of households living in shacks declined. However, those declines had of late stagnated and begun to reverse.

It would take some time for the apparent present growth of shack settlements to feed through into official data, but it would be no surprise to find that progress made in improving housing conditions in South Africa was now reversing. 

The IRR has pointed out that the radical inflection of government policy after 2007 did great harm to the South African economy and stalled much of the progress that was being made to that point. IRR analysts have argued that only if policy makers adopt sensible ideas that draw investment, create new wealth and jobs, and grow the economy will there be a real prospect of the country resuming the trajectory it was on into 2007.


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