TV star in fight with Cape landlord
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Cape Town - TV star Bonnie Mbuli feels she’s been forced out of her home after falling out with her real estate agent.
The Afternoon Express presenter and actress said her landlord’s agents have been making life difficult for her and her Zimbabwean nanny since she moved into the Mowbray house in August.
Mbuli, 36, who moved to the Mother City from Johannesburg three years ago, said: “I need a live-in nanny because my boy is six years old and I’m a working mother.
“My contract states that whoever lives in the house must have permission to live there.”
The actress said she emailed a copy of her 20-year-old nanny’s passport to the landlord, but they wanted to see her work visa.
“They told me I am harbouring an illegal immigrant and that I’m unethical and breaking the law. They then gave me a week to sort this all out,” said Mbuli.
“That’s when I contacted a litigation lawyer because I felt it was becoming a race issue.”
Mbuli says the one-week deadline for her nanny to get a work visa was unreasonable.
“On Wednesday they called me to say that people were coming to view the house, and true to form, people rocked up there on Saturday,” she said.
She then vented her anger on Twitter, where followers supported her cause.
“Black people told me that this is a normal occurrence in Cape Town,” she said.
“[They say] when they view apartments they actually take white people with them because otherwise they won’t get the place they want.”
Marc Lunau, the estate agent who runs Houses4Rent, said: “I categorically refuse any race connotations.”
He said that through mutual agreement with Mbuli’s lawyer it was decided that her lease would be terminated and that she’d move out at the end of November.
Lunau said: “I’m representing the property owner and there is a clause in the lease that says foreigners need to provide the correct documentation.
“When she [Mbuli] moved in it was just her and a child listed.
“Later she changed the occupancy details and couldn’t provide us with proof that this person is in the country legally.”
Lunau adds that it was Mbuli who offered to sort it out in a week, and adds that he was happy to accept a receipt from Home Affairs that proves the paperwork was being processed.
But Mbuli said she was at her wits’ end and didn’t want to fight anymore.
“At the end of the day this is happening in Cape Town, and if me speaking about it brings about change, from the people that can change these things then that’s a good thing,” she said.
She added on Twitter: “Now I’m tired, my spirit is broken, I just want peace so I’m gonna move out with my sanity. They get away with it and life just moves on...”Daily Voice