Red Ants urged to soften approach

By Drum Digital
15 July 2014

The Red Ants have an obligation to protect children, the disabled, the elderly and women during evictions.

An eviction by the Red Ants left 61 families homeless last week when they demolished their shacks in Zandspruit, sparking widespread anger.

There have been a number complaints about the aggressive way the Red Ants execute evictions. They are often accused of violence and the demolition of property.

Gauteng housing MEC Jacob Mamabolo said a new chapter was being written in terms of evictions.

He came to an agreement with Johannesburg sheriffs and drew up a memorandum of understanding with the Red Ants.

They conceded that they have an obligation to protect children, the disabled, the elderly and women during evictions.

The Red Ants have agreed to give the department at least 48 hours notice of an eviction.

"There will be challenges. What we are pleading for from the public is that they give us an opportunity to try to open a new chapter" with regard to evictions," said Mamabolo.

The department wants to ensure that there is enough communication with those facing eviction.

"I have asked for a pamphlet to be produced, written in clear language, that [explains that] there is a legally acquired court order to evict people . [We will] try our best to make sure that everybody has received the message," he said.

-timeslive

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