Protesters stop demolition FROM PAGE 1

2016-10-12 06:00


PROTESTERS in Glenhills were successful in their attempts to stop the demolition of houses and structures built illegally on land expropriated by the KwaDukuza Municipality on Thursday.
Protesters from the Happy Valley, Murugan’s Road and Top Shop areas, where the court order states majority of the illegal houses are situated, took to the streets at 5am. The angry residents burned tyres and trees and closed off roads into and out of the area with rocks and garbage refusing to allow the demolition, which commenced on Monday, to continue.
Protesters also demanded an audience with KwaDukuza mayor Ricardo Mthembu however, Mthembu was not able to go to the area at the time.
Finally, some hours into the protesting the standoff between the protesters and municipal officials - which was closely monitored by KwaDukuza SAPS and Crime Prevention officers - came to an end with an agreement to halt the demolition until a meeting with mayor Mthembu on Wednesday, 12 October (today).
The municipality has agreed that they will not go ahead with demolishing the structures until the meeting where they hope a resolution will be found.
The protests gained mixed reactions from the rest of the community with some in support of the protesters while others were irked by the disruption to their daily routine, having to find alternate routes to enter and exit the area.

Commenting on a post on the Stanger Weekly Facebook page, Natasha Govender said: “I’m in full support of saving those houses. Some have spent their life savings on those buildings and for some this may be the only way they will be able to afford their own home. On that note, today’s protests was not on. People who bought the said land knew well in advance that trouble would be knocking on their doors soon. How can you be sold property with no title deed?
“How can you build a home without a building plan? I ask these questions because I myself went to view the same and for all intent and purposes I was ever ready to purchase because of the price. After meeting with the councillor and having him fail to give me the answers I needed I backed out. So today for others to disrupt and burn, burn, burn, blocking roads for the rest is totally unnecessary. Go protest outside the municipality. Get an online petition and use every human right legislation possible...object to breaking down these homes, but please do it without disrupting the general public.”

Another resident, Pregasen Don Perumall felt it was a display of a united community fighting for their homes.

“This looks like a united community fighting for a common cause. It’s typical of the municipality not to be on their toes monitoring these so called illegal homes being built.
“Surely it wasn’t built overnight because they look like [the homes are] built out of blocks. The municipality should have demolished the first house and set a precedence to any future development. My solution is let the houses be, charge the homeowners for the property if they please [because] the municipality has already legally connected power and water to these houses.”
Stay updated, check out the Stanger Weekly Facebook page for more information.

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