110 found living at problem building

2016-05-24 06:00

Problem buildings came under the spotlight last week when the City’s Problem Building Unit joined the police in a raid on 10 Wright Street in Woodstock on Thursday last week.

They confiscated tik with a street value of just under R4000 and five bags of dagga.

Three people were arrested on drug-related charges, one of whom was also found in possession of R2510 in cash. A fourth suspect was arrested on a charge of rape.

JP Smith, Cape Town’s Mayco member for safety and security explains that this address is on the list of problem buildings that the City is dealing with. “The owner absconded several years ago and since then the property has been invaded by illegal occupiers who have taken over the four houses (8 to 12 Wright Street), but also put up numerous backyard structures,” he said.

At the last count there were 110 adults and 28 children under the age of 16 on the site.

“We will be enlisting the services of the Department of Social Development, but will also increase the frequency of raids on the property. Wright Street is an example of the struggles we have with absentee landlords who abandon their properties,” Smith says.

“As it is a private property, it is up to the owner to evict unlawful occupiers, but we are doing everything possible from our side (in conjunction with the police) to try and shut down this crime haven.This includes applying for a demolition order which we are currently discussion with other relevant City departments.”

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