Lenasia land/housing controversy continues

Statement issued by the Lenasia Concerned Residents Association (16 May 2013)

 The Lenasia housing saga that stemmed from inhumane and barbaric act of demolishing houses in Lenasia last year has not yet been resolved.

Contrary to media report in the Sowetan edition of 15-May-2013, the residents’ committee unreservedly and unequivocally refute that an agreement has been reached between the state and affected stakeholders.

According to Bongani Mpande the secretary of the resident committee the impasse is far from the realisation of an amicable solution or agreement between the two parties. “This is propagandist reportage by the Gauteng Department of Housing’s spokesperson Motsamai Motlaolwa.

The parties are still yet to find a breakthrough or common ground regarding three fundamental issues namely SUBDIVISION OF STANDS, LAND DISPOSAL AT MARKET RELATED VALUE and COMPENSATION FOR DEMOLISHED structures.

Furthermore, the task team set up by the minister of Human Settlement Cde. Tokyo Sexwale last year had not met for more than five months prior to the meeting held on Monday 13- May- 2013 “.

The residents committee is also baffled by the news that the minister of Human Settlement and the Gauteng MEC for Local Government and Housing have both endorsed a ghost agreement.

Lazarous Baloyi, the chairperson of the residents committee says that the article was unfortunate and grossly misleading to the public. “How can the minister and the MEC approve of a plan or agreement when the task team as a collective has not agreed on certain critical and pivotal aspects?

At no juncture in time did we ever engage the MEC. We are waiting for the inclusion of the three issues into the framework and a full audit report. We anticipate having another meeting in three weeks which tells you that negotiations are ongoing and no finality has been arrived at. In addition, the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) asked fundamental questions that were not answered and avoided by human settlements officials and in our view; the SAHRC is not keen to sign the framework with unanswered questions.

The next meeting will be held in three weeks to try and find harmonious understanding. No agreement has been reached.


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