Members of the SANDF, SAPS and Law Enforcement at a protest in Imizamo Yethu township in Hout Bay. Picture: Armand Hough/African News Agency (ANA)
Members of the SANDF, SAPS and Law Enforcement at a protest in Imizamo Yethu township in Hout Bay. Picture: Armand Hough/African News Agency (ANA)

MECs won't tolerate any illegal land invasions in Western Cape

By Odwa Mkentane Time of article published Aug 4, 2020

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Cape Town – “If the City wants a war, we are ready.”

So said community activist and leader Loyiso Nkohla, in response to a joint statement released by Human Settlements MEC Tertius Simmers, Safety MEC Albert Fritz, and Local Government MEC Anton Bredell - calling on SAPS, the SANDF and law enforcement agencies to arrest those who are leading land grabs in the province.

The statement was released following a series of land invasions that have recently taken place in several areas.

Nkohla said he was disappointed by the statement.

“The DA-led government in the province is the one that is causing chaos because they have falsely promised to build houses for our people but nothing has happened.

“They are contradicting themselves now because that is not what they agreed on when they met with the Minister of Human Settlements, Lindiwe Sisulu, on the land invasion issues in the province.

“I have tried many times to have a meeting with mayor Dan Plato and JP Smith on the land issue, on how we can work together to come up with solutions, but they refused.

"Now the matter is escalating and they blame people for their faults. If they want a war, we are ready - we are forever ready for them,” said Nkohla.

The MECs said between April and July this year, City of Cape Town’s law enforcement had to respond to 260 incidents of illegal land invasions.

Simmers said: “It has become clear that those who are complicit and involved in these illegal events only have criminal intentions. This past weekend’s illegal invasion, and subsequent damage caused at the Kraaifontein racing track, is an example of this.

“In the meanwhile, SAPS must demonstrate to this province’s citizens that they will not allow these illegal acts to continue. They have a duty - more so now under the current regulations - to uphold and enforce the laws of the country.”

Mayco member for Human Settlements, Malusi Booi, said the City had no budget allocated to potential new unplanned settlements formed through illegal occupation.

“The City does not have the resources to cater to newly-formed settlements at the expense of planned service provision.

"Illegal land invasions are against the law and pose great fire, safety, health and flood risks.”

Cape Times

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