Council demolishes home ‘by mistake’ at Ennerdale’s Lakeview informal settlement

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“Traumatised and heartbroken” were the words used by 47-yearold Sinqobile Maphosa to describe how she felt as her world came crashing down when her house was demolished.

On 25 March, a budget of R100 302 for a house, her house, went down the drain.

Maphosa asked herself, why me, when she received a call from her neighbour notifying her that her house was being demolished at Ennerdale’s Lakeview informal settlement.

According to Maphosa, when she arrived at her home, people from the Gauteng department of housing were present, escorted by Red Ants Security Relocation & Eviction workers, along with the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD).

“I thought the department of housing would build us houses not demolish them,” she said.

Maphosa said when she went to the department of housing, having been directed to ward 121 councillor Khazamula Chauke, she was informed that it was established her house had been demolished by “mistake”.

When asked for comment by Saturday Citizen, Chauke said he was “busy” and did not provide comment.

“I have been inquiring, who will take responsibility for this?” Maphosa said.

“I asked him and he told me the department said it was a mistake and they will rebuild my house, but they don’t know when.”

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“I can’t believe this is happening. All my life, I invested money in this house. I am now 47 years old with no home, and this was the first home for my family.”

Thabile Mbhele, the spokesperson for MMC for housing in the city of Joburg, did also not respond to a request for comment.

Maphosa said she did not understand why her house was demolished.

She only provided help to a strapped community.

She said the community did not have access to water and she let them join their pipes to her main pipe.

“I went to the housing department to inquire if they can provide us with water, but they refused. I bought my own pipes and connected them all on my own. From then, people started connecting from my pipe,” she said.

“I don’t know if that was the reason they demolished my house.” Maphosa said there was no way she could rebuild her house.

A neighbour who lives near Maphosa, Gabriel Coetzee, said the incident came as a huge surprise.

He said according to the housing department, the reason they demolished the house was because Maphosa “was absent and it looked like she did not reside there”.

Source: citizen