Barkly Road still closed

2018-01-17 06:00
Angered residents of Lerato Park, who demand to be put in straights, barricade the main road from Barkly West.

Angered residents of Lerato Park, who demand to be put in straights, barricade the main road from Barkly West.

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Demands to be put in straights intensified as Lerato Park residents shut down the main road from Barkly West since Monday (15/01) afternoon.

The residents are up in arms and demand that Sylvia Lucas, premier, Mangaliso Matika, Sol Plaatje mayor, and Alvin Botes, MEC for the Department of Co­operative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs, visit them.

They want answers as to when the process of putting them in straight lines will start in order for them to get basic services.

The road is still blocked with rocks, lamp posts and building material. Power lines are destroyed and the tar is dug up while they agree to halt the burning of tyres.

The residents have already started occupying the open land next to the newly built phase 2 houses in an attempt to get the attention of go­vernment.

To them, it is an action of meeting Councillor Paul Kock halfway after he promised them land before, and after he became councillor.

They claim to now be forgotten and side-lined during housing allocation periods and demand that Kock steps down.

According to them, being allocated their own stands will prevent what they regard as corruption and mal­administration that has been taking place, where beneficiaries from outside Lerato Park had been benefitting from houses while they stay in the dump.

“That is exactly why we voted for him. To put us in straight lines. Now he is playing hide and seek, instigating the people that he has illegally alloca­ted our houses to,” said a community representative, Jerry Thekiso.

The community now refuses to send a delegation as per request, to meet the relevant stakeholders, after three of their fellow comrades were arrested without any charges on Wednesday (10/01).

The three representatives were incarcerated at the Galeshewe police cells and released the next day without any charge docket or court appearance.

The residents, of whom some have been staying in Lerato Park since 1998, claim that they have waited too long for houses.

The 57-year-old Mina Russel, who moved onto the empty plots expressed her frustration by saying: “My sister is staying in Soul City and erected a shack there a few years after I moved here to Lerato Park. She already owns an RDP house.

“The only thing wrong in Lerato Park is the corruption that is happening here. Politicians cash in on our vulne­rability by giving our houses to their acquaintances and nyatsis.

“They sell and rent out our houses while we have been on waiting lists forever and always told we are pre-approved,” she added.

“Moving here, we are making it easier for whoever will be allocating the houses that are still to be build. We are occupying our land here. Our houses will be build this time. It will no longer be houses for preferred candidates,” added Thelma Kroos.

The residents refuse to work with the Roodepan Police Station as mediators and call it Kock’s tuck shop.

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