Ruyterwacht residents picketed against Communicare at Vereniging Circle. Picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)
Ruyterwacht residents picketed against Communicare at Vereniging Circle. Picture: Tracey Adams/African News Agency (ANA)

Communicare responds to claims of illegality in sale of Ruyterwacht land

By Mwangi Githahu Time of article published Mar 9, 2021

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Cape Town - Communicare has responded to questions about the legality of its ownership of properties across Cape Town that were raised in an open letter from the Ruyterwacht Community Association (RCA) and delivered to CEO Anthea Houston on Saturday.

The open letter, signed by RCA representative Mandisa Zamile, demanded Communicare show written proof of its rights to the the properties.

Zamile said: “Communicare grabbed these social rental houses from the apartheid government for free. Communicare has never acted in good faith.”

The RCA has approached the courts to prevent Communicare from transferring assets to Goodfind Properties and are waiting to hear if they have a case or not.

Houston said the threat of impending court action by the RCA could not stop Communicare’s disposal of its properties in Ruyterwacht.

Communicare spokesperson Megan Lennert said the company and its fully owned subsidiary, Goodfind Properties, were the registered and legal owners of properties involved.

“Communicare did not acquire land illegally. There is nothing illegal about the acquisition or sale of land in Ruyterwacht. We understand the deep desire many tenants feel to own their own properties. The legacy of apartheid prevented this for many. Communicare can’t reverse this legacy but we are embarking on the sale of houses, at discounted prices to some tenants, as a great opportunity to help address this.”

In a statement, the company detailed the history of how the organisation came to be in its present form.

“The registrar of companies approved our company’s name changes as follows: in 1964, the name officially changed from Citizens’ Housing League Utility Company to Citizens’ Housing League; in 1981 our name officially changed again to Housing League; then in 1990 it changed to Communicare.”

“We have the registrar’s name change certificates to attest to this and an independent party can also verify this with the government’s Companies and Intellectual Property Commission (CIPC). Any organisation is entitled to change its name and retain its assets, including property,” said the statement.

Cape Argus

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