About 50 members of the Stellenbosch Backyard Dwellers Forum marched to Stellenbosch town hall on Wednesday to demand progress on housing projects they said were promised to them by the municipality.
They live in shanties in the backyards of houses in Cloytsville, and pay rent from 800 to 2,500 rand a month to the homeowners. The Forum delivered a petition to the municipality, signed by 966 people, asking for the allocation of several plots of land for backyard housing.
The forum said that the municipality in nearby Kayammandi had acquired land and built houses on it for people who had occupied the land. But they said their demands were ignored. “Should we also start illegally conquering lands before we are heard?” They said in the petition.
They said, “If we don’t receive any feedback within seven days, we will definitely disable/hack the golf course.”
Forum Secretary PJ Plaatjies said Az that the backyards have been dealing with the municipality since 2011. According to Plaatjies, a plot of land in Cloetesville was designated by the mayor and the backyards were promised homes there. But he said the land has now been sold to private developers.
“We know they’ll be interested when we invade the golf course because the rich go there,” Platjes said.
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“Our people are suffering,” said Christine Stein, treasurer of the Forum. “We have been banned by the municipality, they are selling our land to outsiders and this year it will stop. We have been peaceful long enough.”
Steyn says the security complexes being built around Cloetesville are unaffordable for a backyard.
said Stellenbosch municipality spokesman Stuart Grobbelaar Az The municipality will respond to the memorandum within seven days. He said the municipality works with the forum on a regular basis.
According to Grobbelaar, the municipality has identified several parcels of land in Cloitsville and has applied for funding for feasibility studies from the Department of Human Settlements.
“Human settlements are a purview and mandate at the national and regional level, and municipalities across the country only act as implementing agents for housing projects based on funding received from these areas of government,” Grobbelaar says.
“Stellenbosch Municipality provides as many housing opportunities as possible with the limited resources we receive.” DM
It was first published by Az.