House, office set alight

2017-08-24 06:00
Councillor Anele Gabuza’ s office was vandalised by angry group which demand houses, on Sunday noon, in Harare, Khayelitsha.PHOTOS: Mbongiseni MASEKO

Councillor Anele Gabuza’ s office was vandalised by angry group which demand houses, on Sunday noon, in Harare, Khayelitsha.PHOTOS: Mbongiseni MASEKO

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The office and house of Ward 98 Councillor Anele Gabuza was attacked and later set on fire allegedly by people who identified themselves only as backyarders.

They also allegedly attacked the shack of a woman who works for Gabuza.

The incidents took place in Harare and Endlovini, Khayelitsha, respectively, on Sunday.

Gabuza said a group of residents stormed his office in Harare and torched it, stealing six new bicycles meant for the Neighbourhood Watch in the process, including printers and other office equipment.

“They then went to my house, threw it with stones, thus breaking windows, but were dispersed by the police,” he said.

Agnes “Mabhoza” Mpiyane,49, is the woman whose shack was also gutted.

Gabuza said fortunately, no one was injured in the fire and there wwere no casualties.

Gabuza said the group of people had first come to his office earlier in the week, demanding land to build their shacks.

“ ...I made it clear to them that the land belonged to the City of Cape Town, and asked them to bring a list of their names so I could take it to the city. They came back with a list of 254 names of people whom they said are backyarders from Endlovini ... I was surprised to know that there are backyarders in Endlovini,” Gabuza said.

He said the residents want to be accommodated in the Phase One housing project, which is presently under construction.

The projected settlement will accommodate about 324 residents.

He said Phase Two will see houses being built at Endlovini afterwards.

Gabuza believes that the backyarderswere angry because their shacks, which were built illegally, had been demolished by the City.

“I am willing to address the matter with them and the City. I was surprised to see them vandalising the facility like that...”

He also said two suspects have been arrested.

GROUNDUP reported that Noloyiso Rwexana, provincial police spokesperson, said the suspects, aged 31 and 36 were due to appear in the Khayelitsha Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.

Mpiyane said the group did not give reasons why they demolished her shack.

“I was told it was simply because I work for Gabuza. I did not worry about their action, because there is nothing that I could do about it... Some of them have since approached me to apologise. I told them that they must apologise to the people of Khayelitsha as whole, because they destroyed the information for them and also prevented them from getting service delivery. I am now living like refugee in my own country.

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