Communicare Ruyterwacht sale will go ahead no matter what, says CEO
Cape Town - Social housing giant Communicare will go ahead with the disposal of its properties in Ruyterwacht, and chief executive Anthea Houston said not even the threat of court action by the Ruyterwacht Community Association (RCA) can stop it.
The sale will include the 271 free-standing houses and the 24 apartment blocks, cottages, duplexes and semi-detached houses owned by Communicare in Ruyterwacht.
The RCA have approached the courts to prevent Communicare from transferring the assets to its subsidiary, Goodfind Properties (Pty) Ltd, which is responsible for managing a number of Communicare properties and tenants.
On Saturday, RCA members held a placard protest and handed over a petition of their grievances to a Communicare representative.
RCA spokesperson Mandisa Zamile said tenants were against the sale, because the prices were unaffordable.
Zamile said: “We are rejecting the sale, and we are united, because it is not going to benefit any of us in Ruyterwacht.”
Houston said Communicare had invested too much into the decision to dispose of its stock in Ruyterwacht, including engaging with the banks and the provincial department of human settlements, to stop now.
Houston said: “It’s unfortunate that people have started a court action now, but we’re certainly not going to stop implementing our plans because there are matters in front of the court.”
She said: “We are very confident, and we simply can’t stand still for two or three years while the high court contemplates whether we are doing the right or the wrong thing.”
The advocate representing the RCA in their court action, Thando Dondolo said: “This is the matter which the court must adjudicate. The case is raising the issue of ownership, how it came about, and also the issue of the transfer of properties from Communicare to Goodfind, which is a subsidiary company.”
He said: “It is sad that Communicare would run ahead of all these processes without waiting for the courts to pronounce on these matters.”
Dondolo said the RCA also has a land claim case against Communicare, and he suggested that Communicare feared that courts might come to the defence of the RCA.
“We are awaiting instructions from our clients to interdict this whole process in the high court,” said Dondolo.
Meanwhile, provincial ANC human settlements spokesperson Andile Lili said the RCA should not give up and must use whatever methods possible to draw the provincial government’s attention to their plight.
Lili said: “This issue from that community needs a committed government, not the DA administration that survives all these years of its government in African and Coloured communities through lies.
“My advice to the people of Cape Town and the Western Cape is they must understand that the DA will never look after our interests as black people. They must keep the fire burning for as long as government does not address their interests. I will personally join them in whatever way that will make this government listen to them.”