‘That’s not my house’

2010-03-13 10:20

A HOMEOWNER who successfully applied for a homeloan account while waiting to be allocated of a low-cost house is paying a high price for being an honest citizen.

When he secured permanent employment, Mandla Sibanyoni, of Ekurhuleni, cancelled his application for the low-cost house but found out a few years later that the house had been issued in his name. As a result he is indebted to the local municipality for R8 256 in rates and taxes.

Sibanyoni demands he get the keys to the house or that the debt be scrapped.

He has fought this battle for ­almost a year without success.

“I decided to contact Hotline after being shunned by the parties responsible for this dilemma.

“I stated my case but the letters continue to flood my postbox and this could affect my credit rating.

“It is high time somebody found a resolution to this matter and Hotline should be my voice,” he said.

In the early 1990s and while he was still unemployed, Sibanyoni applied for a low-cost house in ­Heidelberg, Lesedi Municipality.

After being on a waiting list for many years, Sibanyoni ran out of patience and started looking for alternative accommodation.

He was fortunate to find himself a permanent job and his good credit standing allowed him to qualify for a bonded property in Vosloorus.

Sibanyoni is presently making repayments towards his homeloan account and was disturbed by the recent discovery that he was indebted to the Lesedi Municipality.

In February last year, Sibanyoni started receiving calls from debt collectors representing the municipality reminding him about the ­unpaid account. At the time the debt stood at R6 362 and Sibanyoni disputed that.

Attorneys Van Der Venter ­Mojapelo Inc advised him to submit an affidavit stating his case and the calls stopped for a while.

Sibanyoni contacted the deeds ­office to check on the ownership of the property and it was confirmed that a title deed had been issued in his name.

“I do not have the title deed. An elderly woman occupies the property and she does not have any documents that prove ownership.

“She obviously did not allocate the house to herself, so somebody needs to take responsibility and clean up this mess.”

In November last year, the letters of demand resumed and this time the bill had increased to R8 256.

Van Der Venter Mojapelo Attorneys Inc promised to investigate the matter but did not provide Sibanyoni with feedback.

After complaining to Hotline, we referred the complaint to Victor Moreriane, chief director for communications services in the provincial department of housing.

He referred the complaint to the departmental spokesperson, Fred Mkoko. However, at the time of going to press Mkoko had failed to respond to the enquiry as promised.

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