Minister of Lands, Housing and Urban Development AtupeleMuluzi has said the decent and affordable housing scheme (Dahs) or the malata and cement subsidy programme will create not less than 35 000 jobs in a year.
“I strongly believe that the programme can transform Malawi. Most of the skilled workers will get jobs and it will have a trickle-down effect, particularly in the rural areas,” he said on Saturday in Mulanje during the launch of programme at Chisitu in Mulanje Central constituency.
Muluzi said the programme, one of President Peter Mutharika campaign promises, can also be linked to the community colleges initiative in that trained skilled workers will be engaged in the building of the houses in each of the 193 constituencies in the country.
He urged suppliers of materials to be honest, warning them that they will be dealt with if found to be supplying sub-standard materials.
“I am advising councillors to vigilant and ensure that the programme is a success. In other districts, the programme is going on well and it is my hope that the same will also happen here,” he said.
The programme targets to rehabilitate 75 houses each constituency every year, through the provision of cement, corrugated iron sheets, lime and nails at a subsidised price while five low-cost houses will be built for the most vulnerable people.
Dahs was launched by Mutharika on December 18 2014 at Traditional Authority (T/A) Chadza in Lilongwe where 11 houses were rehabilitated and handed over to the owners.
Mulanje District director of public works Dickens Dausi said the housing development committees have been formed in each constituency to facilitate the selection of beneficiaries of the programme.
He said they have, thus far, received 2 918 bags of cement, 6 500 iron sheets, 310 bags of lime, 1 967 kilogrammes (kg) of nails and 795 ridges.
Member of Parliament (MP) for the area, who is also Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, KondwaniNankhumwa called for collaboration between district executive committee and councillors so that the programme succeeds.