Invasion of land is counterproductive

2017-09-13 06:01

LAND invasion is going to perpetuate anarchy and mayhem if this trend continues. The land grab in Bonella seems to be politically orchestrated. Leaders who encourage land grabs are creating a false sense of hope among the homeless.

It is only the municipality in collaboration with all role players, including the shack dwellers, that can charter a way forward to solve the housing crisis.

The homeless are fully aware of the wastage coupled with high levels of corruption in government that is robbing them of the basic needs in life such as decent accommodation.

When citizens are aware of the unrelenting abuse of taxpayers’ money, they have all the right to agitate for, and demand, service delivery.

However, invasion of municipal and private land is not the answer to solve this multifaceted challenge.

Land earmarked for housing development must be allowed to continue. Shack dwellers with allocated houses need to be monitored to ensure they are living in those houses and not renting them out.

The voters’ roll and their identity numbers needs to be used in the allocation of houses. A data base of the beneficiaries of these homes needs to be compiled. Anyone found renting out their homes must be criminally charged.

This could be one way of curtailing the phenomenon of “shack lords”.

Every person needs a roof over their head as this provides dignity to people and families. The fight for shelter needs to be fought strategically. Turning the issue of housing into a racial or political issue complicates matters. The focus has to be on when respective housing developments will commence,the number of units, the projected completion date and ultimately the method used to allocate the units.

A memorandum of understanding needs to be fostered among all shack dwellers so they are aware of all procedures.

Ultimately land invasions is counterproductive serving only to stifle growth and development.

VIJAY SURUJPAL

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