The South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) has agreed to hand over a piece of land to accommodate the 800 residents who were evicted from the Lwandle informal settlement at the beginning of this week. The land on which the residents built their homes is owned by Sanral.
In a media briefing on Thursday Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu said she met with evicted residents at their temporary accommodation. She said the residents agreed to her suggestion that a piece of land be made available on which houses will be built for the evicted families to live permanently.
Until the houses are built she said emergency housing kits will be given to the community for them to erect homes on another piece of land as a temporary measure. Sisulu also spoke of an emergency housing fund that could be used during the crisis.
A Commission of Enquiry has also been established to investigate what took place at the Lwandle informal settlement this week, and how it came to be that residents were so brutally evicted from their homes.
The commission has been tasked with the investigation into the process that led to the evictions, from the role of all government officials involved to the role of the courts that issued the eviction order, to how the residents ended up occupying the piece of land and where they are on the housing list.
The commission was given two months to complete the enquiry.
“We must start by putting it on record that we do not tolerate, condone nor encourage any illegal occupation of land in our country. Of concern to us was the carelessness in which the evictions happen,” she said.
“What is of concern to us is how they happened at all in that particular way. How did we get to that situation?”
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