Macassar residents say plea to have 'drug den' demolished have fallen on deaf ears
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Cape Town - Macassar residents say their plea to have a property used as a drug den demolished by the Department of Public Works has fallen on deaf ears.
They said the property, in Musica Avenue, had been standing unoccupied for the past 27 years and had been causing problems for neighbours because youngsters had been “misusing” it.
Community activist Christiaan Steward, who has been escalating the matter to the department for years, said the property was an old police house which imposed security risks on the neighbours.
He said a murder was committed in the house during the past four years.
“Those using drugs use this house for themselves, and the neighbours next to this house can't sleep peacefully. After numerous calls to the department they came to close off the windows, however the people used the roof to enter the building and started demolishing the house for easy access.
“This is a headache, a pain for the neighbours, especially for neighbour Mrs Koopman who is a pensioner and was forced to upgrade her fence so they don't enter her yard and steal her belongings.
“The security that used to be stationed there was removed and now the place is further deteriorating,” he said.
Neighbour Beeryldine Koopman said the property not only posed security but also health risks.
“These people sleep on the rooftop and foul language is the order of the day. The stench is terrible as these people use the house to relieve themselves. In summer we cannot go outside or even open the windows for fresh air because of the unbearable smell coming from inside the house,” she said.
Steward said the residents had requested to use the property as a crèche or to rent it out to a resident, however there had not been a proper answer and a solution.
Department of Transport and Public Works spokesperson Jandré Bakker said properties leased for or on police grounds were under the custodianship of the national Department of Public Works and Infrastructure, and not of the provincial department.
National Department of Public Works and Infrastructure Motlhabane Skade said the house was previously bricked up entirely to prevent illegal access, however, intruders resorted to using the roof to gain access.
“The roof was repaired to prevent vagrants from accessing the property through the roof,” he said.
Skade said the department intends to dispose of the property through open tender, following the supply chain management processes.