30 October 2020 - NW1848
Tafeni, Ms N to ask the Ms N Tafeni (EFF)asked the Minister of Public Works and Infrastructuree
(1) Whether her department owns the land next to the East London Airport where houses were demolished; if so, what are the relevant details; (2) whether her department went to court to obtain an order to demolish the houses; if so, what are the relevant details?
The Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure:
1. The Remainder of Portion 1 of the farm Grey-Dell No. 871, East London Registration Division as depicted on S.G.-diagram 1288/1900 and registered vide deed of transfer T409/1952 in the name of the National Government of the Republic of South Africa.
The property is 271, 9114 ha in extent and is commonly known as Bongweni.The property falls under the custodianship of the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure (DPWI) in terms of the State Land Disposal Act, Act 48 of 1961.
2. Yes, the DPWI approached the HighCourt for intervention by taking legal action against the erection of illegal structures and this was granted on the 16th March 2017. In line with the Court Order, only unoccupied structures and structures under construction were demolished.
The demolition is in line with a Court Order that permits the landowner to prevent the illegal invasion of its property. This was a joint operation between DPWI, South African Police Service and Sheriff of the Court.
The illegal structures are within a restricted area in the direct flight path to/from East London Airport which also constitutes a serious risk to residents.