Category Archives: Alfred Moselakgomo

Sowetan: Residents threaten to boycott elections

Residents threaten to boycott elections
31-Mar-2011 | Alfred Moselakgomo

“This government is playing with us. Since they dug foundations for RDP houses more than a year ago they have not come back to us,” said Nurse Motha of Donkerhoek.

She lives in a one-roomed mud house next to her roofless RDP structure.

“This incomplete house is a home to my chickens while my family and I sleep in a mud house,” she said.

Motha is one of 130 prospective RDP beneficiaries on Donkerhoek and Jabulane farms outside Piet Retief.

In February last year the Mpumalanga Regional Training Trust (MRTT) entered into an agreement with the Human Settlements Department as well as the provincial and national rural development departments to ensure poor people received RDP houses.

A contractual cost of R8170175 was to be funded by the national Department of Rural Development after invoices from the provincial human settlements department were processed. But this has not happened.

Authorities blame non-payment for the delays in completing the houses.

During their appearance before Scopa on their financial statement, provincial rural development MEC Candith Mashego-Dlamini accused the national Department of Rural Development of failing the project.

“We have been liaising with them (national department) to determine why MRTT has not been paid as agreed, but to no avail.

“Plans are under way to meet the departmental director-general to highlight challenges that MRTT and the province are facing due to the failure to transfer funds,” Mashego-Dlamini said.

She said failure to pay MRTT was to blame for the current state of affairs at Donkerhoek and Jabulane villages, where the houses were left half-complete since early last year. The project was supposed to be completed in June last year.

MRTT chief executive Davis Moropane said despite the challenges, his trust had managed to build and complete 50 houses, while 76 were under construction.

A total of 28 youths trained by MRTT in bricklaying and plumbing are involved in building the houses.

Another disappointed beneficiary, Vusumuzi Dlamini, said she did not see any reason to vote for the ANC after what she described as “total disrespect”.

Patrick Neves of JDR Construction, the company appointed to build the houses, said they were also disappointed by the government’s failure to pay them.

Sowetan: 200 lose their homes

200 lose their homes

Alfred Moselakgomo
07 February 2008
The Sowetan

Kicked out: 200 farm residents were evicted from a privately owned farm in White River, Mpumalanga. The stranded residents have now been housed at the local municipal hall. PHOTO: LOWVELDER

Their shacks were reduced to twisted metal by a bulldozer

About 200 farm residents have described their eviction from land they have lived on since 1992 as “evil”.

Farm residents at Heidelberg Farm in White River, Mpumalanga, told Sowetan yesterday that they could not believe it when their tiny shacks were crushed by a bulldozer after the farm owner ordered them off his property.

However, they were allowed to gather their belongings, which included chickens, mattresses and the bicycles most of them use as a mode of transport.

The residents have since been allowed to stay at the local municipal hall.

The municipality has blamed the farm owner, Pieter Knoop, of evicting residents without first providing alternative accommodation for them.

“It is against the constitution to remove people without giving them another place to stay,” said municipal spokesman, Vusi Sibiya.

“We have placed these stranded people in the community hall as a temporary measure while we look at ways to find a long-term solution,” he said.

Thirty-two people were arrested for being illegal immigrants.

The residents’ spokesman, Desmond Mambane, said the matter had been referred to the provincial department of land affairs for intervention.

“Knoop told us to vacate his farm because he had sold it as he was too old,” he said.

“Since 1996, we have been paying R30 every month for water but when he told us we should leave this week, there was nothing we could do,” he said.

Mamane said municipal authorities told them they could stay in the hall for a few days before being taken to Tekwane North, where land was being cleared.

Mambane said the eviction was executed very effectively.

“It involved immigration officials, the sheriff’s office and SAPS members.”

Knoop said he had been trying to have the illegal occupants evicted since 2004 because of continual thefts.