City tells flats tenants time is up

2012-10-03 00:00

TENANTS living in the low-cost Fortuna Court block of council flats have been given until the end of this month to vacate the building. For seven years the tenants have dug in their heels and flatly refused to leave after the Msunduzi Municipality asked them to vacate.

The Witness was told that the building would be demolished to make way for a new parking lot for the Premier’s office.

The municipality handed tenants letters of notice to terminate their lease agreement and for them to vacate by October 31.

A resident, who only identified herself as M. Shaik, said she has been living there for 18 years and that years ago the municipality had offered them alternative accommodation in France and Foxhill, but they refused because the areas were far from the city centre. “The municipality needs to find us an alternative place,” she said.

The letter states that the municipality would be proceeding with the demolition of the block of flats and that the premises were required for “urgent future development”.

Msunduzi Municipality spokesperson Brian Zuma said the municipality signed a short-term lease agreement with the tenants of Fortuna Court.

“In terms of the agreement, either party can give 30 days’ notice.

“Legally speaking, there is no obligation on the part of the municipality to find alternative accommodation for them,” said Zuma.

• thobani.ngqulunga@witness.co.za

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