The oldest District Six claimant Shariefa Khan can’t wait to go back to where she was born. pic supplied
The oldest District Six claimant Shariefa Khan can’t wait to go back to where she was born. pic supplied

100-year-old District Six claimant still waiting for keys to her new home

By Siyabonga Kalipa Time of article published Jun 24, 2021

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Cape Town - District Six claimants are not happy that they are not getting their keys today as was promised last week.

Last week, Minister of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development, Thoko Didiza announced the allocation of the 108 dwellings to previously dispossessed people.

They were promised they would get their house keys today, but that is not the case.

Shariefa Khan, who is 100 years old, has been waiting to go back where she was born for more than 50 years. She has been staying in Rylands after they were forcefully removed from District Six.

Khan was emotional and excited after signing the papers last week, as it has always been her wish to go back.

Despite not being entirely happy about the house she was moving into because it was not wheelchair friendly, she is disappointed that she is not getting her keys today.

Khan’s daughter Sumaya Mukkadem said they did not get a satisfactory explanation about why they are not getting the keys today, only that there were some legal matters.

She said she explained to her mother that she has to wait a bit longer, and she saw her sadness.

Khan said: “I am very disappointed and sad because I was looking forward to this day”.

District Six Working Committee spokesperson Karen Brytenbach said they are pleased that the government is supplying beautiful new homes to 108 deserving claimants, but it is unfortunate that these claimants were told last week that they would start moving in from today, and now there are more unforeseen and unexplained delays.

“One of the claimants who was going to move in today is Mrs Shariefa Khan. Her family is very grateful for the apartment, but still don’t have clarity on when she can move in,” she said.

She added that they are happy to see that restitution is happening, but appeal to the government to be more transparent with the claimants and more sensitive to how further delays make them feel.

Didiza’s spokesperson Reggie Ngcobo said the claimants were told they will get their keys this week but there was no specific date.

He said there some processes being finalised because some claimants rejected this phase opting to wait for the next phase.

He said they need to know who is willing to go back and who is rejecting so the number can be presented to the minister.

“It has been raining in Cape Town the past three days and some claimants are old and could not come and be part of the process, but those who are going back, will move over the weekend, said Ngcobo.

Weekend Argus

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