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Johannesburg - The District Six claimants will return to their homes this year, the Rural Development and Land Reform Department said on Monday.
“Minister of Rural Development and Land Reform Gugile Nkwinti told land claimants... that the land claimants who opted for the restoration of their land will this year be able to return to their stands at District Six in Cape Town,” spokesperson Mtobeli Mxotwa said.
Mxotwa said the minister was addressing land claimants in a meeting over the weekend.
“He said the poor people will be given priority by the Social Integration Committee when the empty houses were allocated to the claimants in District Six this year,” he said.
They were urged to register with the committee promptly so they could get their houses “as soon as” this month.
Minister Nkwinti called on the land claimants and their Reference Group to differentiate between the restoration of the land claimants' rights and the business enterprise planned for District Six for its future economic development.
In cases where a person had owned more than one stand, the government would restore one stand and pay financial compensation for other stands.
Land reform beneficiaries, that is people who never lived in District Six before the evictions, would not be considered in the District Six restoration and restitution.
Mxotwa said the restoration of District Six was meant to restore the rights of the people of District Six that were taken away by the apartheid government.
The stands whose owners had opted for financial compensation would be used for business purposes.
Residents were forcibly removed from District Six in the 1960s, following the introduction of the Group Areas Act. - Sapa