housing distruption pic Mlondolozi Mbolo

Siyavuya Mzantsi

A CEREMONY to mark the finalisation of the Nuwe Begin project in Mfuleni ended prematurely yesterday when Human Settlements MEC Bonginkosi Madikizela’s speech was interrupted by a crowd who held aloft chairs and sang Struggle songs.

Madikizela was there to explain the history of the RDP housing project that comprised 1 791 homes. The beneficiaries started occupation in 2012.

Madikizela was set to address residents’ concerns about the conditions in their RDP houses, but the crowd of about 300 people refused to listen to him.

Police were monitoring the situation.

Madikizela told the crowd: “This is not how you should be behaving. These people were living in appalling conditions in TR section, in Khayelitsha, and this is a good project.”

He said while concerns that some residents had raised were being addressed, the crowd’s behaviour was unacceptable.

“We are not going to run away because of barbaric people,” he said.

Some beneficiaries with title deeds claimed their homes had been sold to other people.

Nokuthula Mgogoshe said: “I was told by other people who were not meant to benefit from this project that they had bought houses for R5 000.”

Madikizela responded: “People must come forward with evidence… I have spoken with the tenants and we going to have a meeting.”

He was recently escorted by police after Vredenburg residents in Saldanha chased him away.