South Africa 11.7.2014 08:07 am

Lwandle inquiry to start

FILE PICTURE: A family sits next to demolished shacks on June 3, 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa. Hundreds of Nomzamo Informal Settlement residents were left out in the cold after authorities evicted them from the area, saying they are illegally occupying privately owned land. The land belongs to Sanral and is designated for the rerouting of the N2. Picture: Gallo Images / The Times / Thomas Holder.

FILE PICTURE: A family sits next to demolished shacks on June 3, 2014 in Cape Town, South Africa. Hundreds of Nomzamo Informal Settlement residents were left out in the cold after authorities evicted them from the area, saying they are illegally occupying privately owned land. The land belongs to Sanral and is designated for the rerouting of the N2. Picture: Gallo Images / The Times / Thomas Holder.

Public hearings into last month’s eviction of illegal shack dwellers in Lwandle, Cape Town, would begin on Monday, the housing ministry said.

The hearings would be held at the Good Hope Sub-Council Building from 10am, spokesman Vusi Tshose said in a statement on Thursday.

“The decision to appoint the inquiry has been taken in pursuance of the duties of the minister set out in sections two and three of the Housing Act, 107 of 1997 read together with the Bill of Rights contained in chapter two of the Constitution,” said Tshose.

The mandate of the inquiry included investigating all the circumstances under which the evictions took place, including the facts leading to the application for and obtaining of the court order on 24 January 2014 by Sanral [SA National Roads Agency Limited], and the execution of the said court order by Sanral.

The role of the sheriff, the City of Cape Town, metro police, the SA Police Service, and all other government entities would also be investigated.

The commission would also need to establish the identity of the Lwandle community who were affected by the removals and explanations would need to be given on how they came to occupy the land while there was a waiting list for the provision of government housing.

A total of 849 families were removed from land owned by Sanral on June 2 and 3. Some of their shacks were demolished while others were set alight.

In the second round of the hearings, some of the affected people would testify before the inquiry, but the housing ministry said this would be done at a venue convenient for them.

Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu would then be presented with the findings and recommendations.

Sapa

 

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