Alexandra land claim agreement reached

An informal settlement. Picture: Michel Bega.

An informal settlement. Picture: Michel Bega.

Claimants have the option of choosing cash settlements instead of land, if that’s what they want more.

The Gauteng department of human settlements and the City of Johannesburg have signed a statement of intent with the residents of Alexandra over a land claim. The agreement will officially be signed today by the department, the city and the Alexandra Land and Property Owners Association, the Alexandra Property Owners Right and the SA National Civic Organisation (Sanco).

Departmental spokesperson Keith Khoza said the statement of intent gave claimants four options as part of resolving the matter.

“The first option is to issue title deeds for the stand of Alexandra to claimants whose claims relate to uncontested stands.”

He said the agreement stated that the transfer would be free and also be done in reasonable time after it met the requirements and was accepted by the claimant. Khoza said that this option could, where feasible, also be extended to currently contested stands where such contestation could be resolved in consultation with Sanco.

Option two was about providing alternative stands to claimants entitled to a single property.

“The government has available land in areas such as Marlboro Gardens, Lombardy East, Kelvin and Linbro Park that will be made available for the provision of alternative land to claimants,” Khoza said.

The land in question would provide more than 1 500 units and each claimant who chose option two would have full ownership of a serviced stand with a “top structure”.

Option three was a development partnership in which the claimant would benefit from the development of the vicinity of his or her pre-1985-owned lot, while option four would see claimants receiving financial compensation.

“Alternatively, the interim interdict will also be uplifted lot once individual claimants has elected an option.”

Khoza said the agreement expressed the desires of government to resolve all legitimate land claims under the Restitution Act relating to Alexandra.

“Each claimant may choose the option he/she wishes. Any claimant that has already received or is entitled to payment in terms of a settlement agreement will still be entitled to the settlement amount.”

Payment of R50 000 to claimants who lodged claims on or before 31 December 1998 was in full and final settlement of their claims under the Restitution Act.

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