South Africa 8.10.2014 04:33 pm

Lwandle Inquiry ‘waste of taxpayers’ money’ – De Lille

FILE PICTURE: Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

FILE PICTURE: Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

The City of Cape Town was happy that the report from an inquiry into the mass eviction of more than 800 families from Lwandle has been completed, mayor Patricia de Lille said on Wednesday.

“The City of Cape Town is glad that this waste of taxpayers’ money is over,” she said in a statement.

“The city notes the report of the Lwandle Inquiry, which was established when Sanral [the SA National Roads Agency Limited] evicted residents who had illegally invaded their land.

She said the inquiry was a “political hit squad” to undermine the DA-led Western Cape government.

The report was handed to Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu at Parliament on Wednesday.

Accepting the 296-page document from advocate Denzil Potgieter, who headed the inquiry Sisulu set up, she said she would spend the next week studying it.

The week after that, it would be sent to Parliament’s human settlements portfolio committee, which would examine its recommendations, Sisulu said.

Potgieter declined to say whether the report implicated either individual officials or institutions whose actions, or lack of action, resulted in 839 families, including children, being turfed out of their shacks in mid-winter, on June 2 and 3.

He did however say the report identified legal and legislative shortcomings.

Potgieter said the inquiry had enjoyed substantial public support, though the absence of both the provincial government and the City of Cape Town from the public hearings had “hampered” its work.

“It is to be noted… that the refusal by the government of the Western Cape, particularly the provincial department of human settlements and the City of Cape Town, to participate in the public hearings, has to an extent hampered the work of the inquiry.”

Potgieter said both parties had declined to accept an invitation to the public hearing, though they had sent written submissions.

De Lille said the inquiry had no legal standing and its recommendations no legal force.

“Nonetheless, when the minister ordains that we actually be sent a copy, we will review it,” she said.

Sapa

 

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