The owners of Schulphoek in Hermanus have agreed to sell the land previously destined for a luxury development back to government to build homes for the residents of Zwehlile. The land has been made available on the provision that no land invasions take place on it.
The deal, however, is still in the valuation process.
MEC for Human Settlements, Bonginkosi Madikizela, said on Thursday the land could possibly be valued at more than R34-million, but this cannot be confirmed until a valuation is carried out.
In the meantime nobody is allowed to start building on the land as environmental impact studies and infrastructure provision still have to be conducted. Thereafter, begins the process of confirming who qualifies to move onto the land.
Co-owner of the land, Leslie viljoen, said in an interview that he and the Rabie Property Group had agreed to sell the 48 hectare piece of land. The land was originally bought from the Overstrand Municipality.
On Tuesday residents of Zwehlile handed over a memorandum of demands to the Overstrand Municipality. After weeks of quiet, protests in the area erupted once again as backyards grew frustrated and impatient in their wait for housing. A meeting between officials of the municipality, MEC for Human Settlements, Bonginkosi Madikizela, and residents was disrupted by two fires started in the street outside municipal offices by demonstrators.
After a marathon protest on Wednesday, a group of Zwehlile residents began clearing land in Schulphoek to build their own structures because they are tired of government’s false promises.
Overstrand councillor Lindile Ntsabo said there were other demands listed in the memorandum, but the priority of the residents is land. “They want to be permitted by the municipality, not later than this week, so that they can put up their structures,” she said.
Dan Plato, MEC for Community Safety, was also present at the meeting and noted that Wednesday’s protest was peaceful, as there were elderly residents walking and going about their routine without being disrupted by the protest.
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