Citizen reporter
1 minute read
5 Jun 2019
11:49 am

JHB city manager says he authorised demolition of Alex houses

Citizen reporter

Ndivhoniswa Lukhwareni says he had the understanding that the targeted structures were either incomplete and/or unoccupied.

Desperate Alexandra township residents salvage what was left of their homes, residents whose illegal structures were built too close to the Gautrain lines and demolished by workers of the Red Ants, 3 June 2019. Picture: Itumeleng English / African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg city manager Ndivhoniswa Lukhwareni reportedly told the Alex inquiry on Wednesday that he had authorised the demolition of at least 80 houses built on illegally occupied land.

READ UPDATE: Joburg city manager says he was taken out of context at Alex Inquiry

In one instance during the inquiry, Lukhwareni said he had the understanding that the targeted structures were either incomplete and/or unoccupied.

Alexandra residents were left destitute without houses when the Red Ants, the police, and Johannesburg metro police department (JMPD) moved in to demolish houses in Stjwetla, Ward 109, on Thursday.

The South African Human Rights Commission and the office of the public protector on Monday convened the third session of the inquiry into socio-economic conditions in Alexandra, following weeks of service delivery protest in the area prior to the May 8 general elections.

The demolition of houses has become a political football with the African National Congress-led provincial government blaming the Democratic Alliance-led city of Joburg administration for carrying out the demolitions.

But the city of Joburg had said that the demolition, which sparked protests by residents, appeared to have been conducted without correct procedures being followed.

Protesters started to block Gautrain operations on Friday following demolitions in Alexandra.

Gauteng member of the executive council (MEC) for human settlements, urban planning and cooperative governance and traditional affairs (Cogta), Lebogang Maile, also visited Alexandra over the weekend and assisted more than 160 destitute families were assisted with supper and foodstuff.

– African News Agency

(Compiled by Makhosandile Zulu)

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