Marchers voice support for building hijackers

tenants05032009 AFP "Building hijackers" Angry tenants and owners of apartment blocks in Joburg's CBD march to the head office of Adprop Property Administration to air their demands. Photo: Antoine de Ras, The Star

Lesley Inglestone says he won't be intimidated by building hijackers.

Inglestone is an administrator appointed by the Johannesburg High Court to look after several failed sectional title buildings in Yeoville and the inner city.

He was reacting to a march on Wednesday by Friends of the Inner City Forum, which went to his offices to demand that his company, Adprop Property Administrators, quit the inner city.

He claims the march was instigated by seven hijackers of a building called Tygerberg in Hillbrow, which is under court administration.

"I managed to get the building back on its feet financially. I have to work in strict adherence to the Sectional Title Act. I managed to get a debt agreement signed with the City of Joburg to pay back arrears.

"Everything was going well until the owners and the tenants of seven flats in the building told the tenants to start paying them," he said.

They started intimidating the owners and tenants and injured one person who refused to pay levies into their account.

They opened a bank account, but Inglestone managed to get it seized and have the money transferred into the body corporate's account. They then opened a second account, which has been frozen pending an investigation.

"These hijackers are now desperate because they have no money coming in. They have appointed four security guards at a cost of R32 000 a month. Their backs are to the wall."

Inglestone said the police refused to act, maintaining it was a civil matter.

Friends of the Inner City Forum launched a campaign to highlight the residents' plight. "We hope to expose companies who swindle the residents," Moses Ka Moyo said.


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