Media Statement - 20 November 2012

Ordinary and innocent people must not suffer because of syndicates stealing government’s land in Lenasia South, Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale said earlier today. He was speaking at the launch of a R55 million Bothasig Gardens Social Housing project in Cape Town.

"People were duped and taken advantage of by people who sold them land illegally, government land. It’s heartbreaking to see houses being demolished,” said Sexwale.

Some members of the syndicates were behind bars and the Minister said nothing should happen to harm or hurt innocent and ordinary people who were taken advantage of.

The same message should go to the banks and financial institutions because "somebody must have been involved in cooking the system internally” for the scam to work. "So those people who bought that land, those people who built those houses in that area illegally, have got to collaborate and cooperate with the government by identifying members of the syndicates we have not brought to book,” said Sexwale. It was important that they worked side by side with the law enforcement agencies to identify people "who have let them down so terribly”.

"At the same time, government is not insensitive to those people who have been duped and conned. My job is to get to the bottom of what happened there and law enforcement agencies enjoy our support in so far as bringing all those people to book,” he said.

The Ministry and the Gauteng Department of Local Government and Housing, would await the decision of the High Court on the matter before deciding on the next course of action. Sexwale was accompanied by the Western Cape MEC for Human Settlements Bonginkosi Madikizela in Bothasig, who emphasized the importance of integration and partnerships in delivering such projects.

Bothasig is a joint partnership between the Department of Human Settlements, Western Cape Provincial Government, the City of Cape Town, the Dutch Government and the private sector. It consists of 120 rental units and is situated near social amenities like parks, police station, churches and it is also close to places work like the Montague Gardens Industrial Area.

For more info contact Xolani Xundu on 083 788 5747

Press Release Date: 
Tuesday, November 20, 2012