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Cape Town -Talks aimed at finding a solution to the eviction of hundreds of families from an informal settlement in Lwandle, Cape Town, were "not a smooth-sailing exercise", a government official said on Monday.
"It was a very difficult exercise. There was a lot of mistrust between ourselves and community members," a deputy director general in the human settlements department, Mbulelo Tshangana, told an inquiry into the matter.
People evicted from Sanral-owned land in Lwandle, Cape Town, last month are to be moved back there, the inquiry into the matter heard on Monday.
Another piece of land they had been moved to, also belonging to the SA National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral), was found to be inadequate, Housing Development Agency (HDA) programme manager Bosco Khoza told the inquiry in Cape Town.
About 200 informal corrugated iron structures with concrete floors were being erected to house them on the original piece of ground. Sanitation and other basic services were also being provided.
“The next exercise is to facilitate the relocation of the affected families into those units,” Khoza said.
The HDA was trying to establish exactly how many shacks were demolished.
On June 2 and 3, about 200 illegally erected shacks were burnt and demolished after Sanral was granted a court order authorising the evictions.
“The sheriff reported 234 shacks that were dismantled. The community contend that the number of families affected are 849,” Khoza said.
“We've also done our preliminary assessment of... the most accurate number. We think it's more plausible to talk about 402
The inquiry was set up by Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu last month.