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Cape Town - Residents of Lwandle township, where an eviction operation turned violent last week, are due to be moved to a plot of land in Kuils River.
The eviction at the Siyanyanzela informal settlement began last Monday and continued into Tuesday – 10 residents were arrested after clashes with police. Some also burnt down their shacks in defiance.
The SA National Roads Agency (Sanral), the owner of the land, was granted an eviction order by the Western Cape High Court earlier this year.
Following the attempted evictions last week, several hundred residents, who had lost their homes, were moved into the nearby Nomzamo community hall in Strand.
On Sunday, Lwandle ward councillor Mbuyiselo Matha confirmed that Sanral had provided the land in Kuils River where residents would be moved, but said the land was in a remote area and with no public transport routes near it.
“People are quite happy about the land, it’s a huge piece of land and would be able to accommodate everyone,” he said.
Matha said contractors were working on the layout and emergency housing kits in preparation for the move. Residents would be responsible for building their homes with the materials given to them.
“Sanral will be paying a contractor to put the emergency housing kits together. That material will then be given to the homeowners for the labour,” he said.
The building should start on Tuesday and the first batch of residents would then move on Thursday.
Sanral could not be reached for comment on Sunday.
In a recent statement, Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille said the city was awaiting confirmation from Sanral and the government on the allocated land.
De Lille said that once confirmation had been received they would be able to issue emergency housing kits in a matter of hours.
On Sunday, a meeting was held at Nomzamo community hall.
While the meeting was taking place, Aletta Mketi was trying to comfort her 3-year-old daughter, Cynthia, who has Down syndrome.
Mketi has spent the past five days at the centre with her daughter.
She said she was happy about the move, but worried her daughter would struggle with transport to school.
“She attends a special needs school here and already she is uneasy with these new surroundings.”
Mketi said living at the hall had irritated her daughter and her eating pattern had been disrupted.
“My child is used to eating mielie pap in the morning and here they feed us another porridge which she does not like.
“The worst part is that there is no one I can bother or beg from here. It’s frustrating,” she said.
“I still cry over what happened. We lost a part of our lives there.”