Joburg church building is a ‘disaster in waiting’

2014-09-30 08:44

Construction at a church building in Lyndhurst, Joburg, was a disaster waiting to happen, say neighbours who have been trying to stop activities at Alleluia Ministries since 2009.

A second story was being added to the church without building plans or approval from the City of Joburg, The Star newspaper reported.

The city has issued two warnings to stop construction, both of which were ignored.

The church was operating illegally because the property it was situated on was not zoned as a place of worship, and the city’s town planning amendments scheme stated that the property was not safe to build on.

Architect Marian Laserson, who has taken up the cause of neighbours, said the foundations of the building were waterlogged.

“It is a disaster waiting to happen. Hundreds of people attend that church every week. It is extremely dangerous,” she said.

Laserson said the city’s amendment scheme specifically said that Johannesburg Road could not provide access to the property, which it did.

The church had also closed off Astra Road, a public street, stating it had permission from the Johannesburg Roads Agency.

The newspaper reported that pastor Alph Lukau did not respond to its request for comment.

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