Earlier this week, it was reported that a group of community and housing activists disrupted a property auction in Mouille Point. The property in question would mean that 80-year-old Kenneth Blaine and his family would be evicted from his home.

As reported by Ground-Up, the Blaine family has claimed they were given no prior notice of their eviction from their Woodstock home, and were allegedly forced to sleep on the street for the evening. The family has called the Woodstock property home for more than 43 years. As soon as the first property on the list was sold, the activists reportedly began chanting “no auction”.

Mayor of the City of Cape Town Dan Plato has claimed that various lobby groups around Cape Town have a “very flexible relationship with the truth”. He also added that while civil society organisations are crucial to a functional democracy, they must carry out this function as honestly and with as much responsibility as possible.

“One of the activist groups in Cape Town claim that the City only informed the resident that his property would be auctioned off with a 48h notice. This is blatantly untrue and it is an injustice to our residents for such misinformation and fake news to be spread,” Plato said in reference to Blaine.

“The truth is that the City has been engaging the residents of the property since 2014. For five years we have offered the resident alternative accommodation, and even offered to sell the council-owned property to him. All these offers were refused and the property was then set to be auctioned, with the resident notified two months ago. The resident claims that the property is registered in his deceased mother’s name. This is unfortunately also not true. The resident has also not been paying the rent, despite his claims to the contrary.”

The Mayor has provided a copy of the court order handed to the Blaine family in reference to their eviction:

Court order – 29 Plein street, Woodstock-1

“Note that the order to evict the resident contains no instruction to the City to provide alternative accommodation. However, we have exhausted all options in trying to do so, and all our offers were refused,” he said.

Picture: Erica Lombard/Twitter

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