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Report on racism in SA property sector delayed as some hearings are still to be finalised

The hearings by the Property Practitioners Regulatory Authority (PPRA) kicked off in Cape Town back in March at the Lagoon Beach hotel. Picture/Video: Ian Landsberg/African News Agency (ANA).

The hearings by the Property Practitioners Regulatory Authority (PPRA) kicked off in Cape Town back in March at the Lagoon Beach hotel. Picture/Video: Ian Landsberg/African News Agency (ANA).

Published May 24, 2022

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Cape Town - Two months after the Property Practitioners Regulatory Authority (PPRA) said it would release its report into racism within the property sector, nothing materialised.

In March, the PPRA, formerly the Estate Agency Affairs Board (EAAB), started the mammoth task of nationwide public hearings into racism within the sector.

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A few hearings were postponed with many poorly attended. Seven hearings took place since March.

Acting marketing and publications manager, Lindani Tshabalala, said the PPRA had not completed its hearings and the outstanding ones would be finalised before the end of next month.

“The executives involved in the hearings had to temporarily focus on other pressing issues as the institution is in the process of transitioning from the EAAB era to the new dispensation in terms of the Property Practitioners Act,” he said.

Tshabalala said a provisional report had been prepared based on the provinces covered. He said a comprehensive report would be finalised once all the outstanding provinces had been visited.

Days after the hearings started, the PPRA said it had placed its chief executive, Mamodupi Mohlala, on precautionary suspension with full pay in terms of its Grievance and Disciplinary Procedure Policy pending investigations into allegations received from the Public Service Commission.

Mohlala was informed of her suspension on March 25.

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“It is in the best interest of the organisation to place her on suspension to allow for an objective, independent and impartial investigation into the allegations,” the PPRA said.

Zolam Properties owner, Zola Mekula, said: “It was really disappointing. I’m not sure if it was poorly organised by the PPRA, or people did not respond because they think it is not relevant.”

He said that due to a time change for Cape Town’s hearings, many left before it started because of poor communication.

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Mekula said it remained difficult to access business in predominantly white areas. Black agents were also not given large properties in sought-after areas.

“In our case, we sell 10 properties and get less than R100 000 sometimes. But they sell one property and get more than R200 000. We want to be there as well, but they are not there to welcome us. If it’s not racism, what is?”

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