Informal settlement on the slopes of Sentinel Mountain, Hout Bay. Picture: AMBROSE PETERS/SUNDAY TIMES
Informal settlement on the slopes of Sentinel Mountain, Hout Bay. Picture: AMBROSE PETERS/SUNDAY TIMES

Following  Roger Briggs’s wise letter in Thursday’s paper (Workable solutions can be found, December 13), only radical, out-of-the-box policies can reverse the downward spiral of our economy.

With rampant unemployment and inequality, millions living in shacks, but a highly efficient construction industry in the doldrums through lack of work, a logical solution to the country’s problems lies in using the latter to eradicate the former.

A Housing Body, with representatives from the building industry, the architectural, quantity surveying and engineering professions, and the national treasury,  could parcel out the provinces to the top nine construction companies, each with a brief to eliminate informal settlements in a given period.

With rigid price controls, and financed through co-operation between government and private sector cooperation, the immediate expansion of employment in the construction industry and downstream in suppliers of material, could engender a long-term upward spiral in the economy.

Boris Yawitch
Riviera