ATC191014: Report of the Select Committee on Petitions and Executive Undertakings on the Hearing of the Ndlovu Petition, Held on 17 July 2019 at Parliament and a Inspection In Loco to Thokoza Hostel and Palm Ridge, in Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality on 23 August 2019, dated 09 October 2019
REPORT OF THE SELECT COMMITTEE ON PETITIONS AND EXECUTIVE UNDERTAKINGS ON THE HEARING OF THE NDLOVU PETITION, HELD ON 17 JULY 2019 AT PARLIAMENT AND A INSPECTION IN LOCO TO THOKOZA HOSTEL AND PALM RIDGE, IN EKURHULENI METROPOLITAN MUNICIPALITY ON 23 AUGUST 2019, DATED 09 OCTOBER 2019
The Select Committee on Petitions and Executive Undertakings (Committee), having considered the Ndlovu Petition, referred to the Committee by the Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP) on 08 November 2018, for its consideration and resolution, reports as follows:
The Ndlovu Petition (petition) was submitted to the NCOP by Mr Gordon Ndlovu (petitioner). Firstly, the petitioner is lodging a claim in respect of the estate of his late mother, Maria Ndlovu over shop No1, also known as Thothos General Dealer, which was leased to his parents by the City of Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality. The shop was situated within the Thokoza Hostel, Erf 8017.
The second part of the claim is reparation for the damage to their business due to the 1990 unrest-related violence in the Kathorus areas. The petitioner is claiming for reparation and the award of ownership rights (issue of a title deed), in terms of the Conversion of Certain Rights into Leasehold or Ownership Act, No. 81 of 1988 (herein the Conversion Act).
In short, the claim deals with the vandalisation of the shop structure and the burning down of the shop during the 1992 political violence, where the Ndlovu family was forced to vacate the shop due to the violence and for safety reasons.
On 17 July 2019, the Committee held a hearing on the petition at Parliament, where the petitioner and relevant stakeholders were invited. The purpose was to afford the petitioner and relevant stakeholders with an opportunity to make first-hand oral submissions in relation to the subject matter of the petition.
2.1Committee Members and Officials
The following Committee Members were in attendance:
- Hon Z V Ncitha, ANC, Eastern Cape (Chairperson);
- Hon E M Mthethwa, ANC, Kwa-Zulu Natal;
- Hon S Shaikh, ANC, Limpopo;
- Hon A B Gxoyiya, ANC, Limpopo;
- Hon T S C Dodovu, ANC Northern Cape;
- Hon G Michalakis, DA, Free State; and
- Hon S Zandamela, EFF, Mpumalanga
The following Committee officials were in attendance:
- Mr N Mkhize, Committee Secretary;
- Adv. T Sterris, Committee Researcher;
- Mr. N Mangweni, Committee Assistant, and
- Mr M Nkwali, Researcher, Office of the Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces.
The following stakeholders were in attendance:
- Mr G Ndlovu, Petitioner;
- Representatives from the City of Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality, Mr. M Motsapi (Head of Department, Corporate Legal Services) and Mr. M Mokoena (Manager, Strategic Advancement and Stakeholder Management);
- Representatives from the Department of Human Settlement, Ms. Z Dhludhla (Chief Director).
3.SUBMISSIONS BY THE PETITIONER
In his submission to the Committee, the petitioner Mr G Ndlovu (Mr. Ndlovu), submitted that the intervention of the Committee will produce a long awaited solution to the problems that has been haunting the black business community in his region and probably the whole of South Africa. He indicated that it should first be able to deal with one matter to be enabled to understand in general how the black business community was also affected by the apartheid laws and political violence that engulfed the region during the political upheavals of the 90’s, and all the challenges that persisted thereafter.
In his submission, Mr Ndlovu also informed the Committee that during the apartheid era the permit system influx control, as well as in common law, pre 1984, prohibited black ownership rights of properties in black urban arrears, townships and elsewhere. That various business entities would receive similar permits (1036 Regulations) and would then operate within one building, on one land, and so it was with his case which he indicated that he would like to relate to as it is a perfect example to use to enable everyone to understand exactly what he is referring to, a worst case scenario of the sinister laws of the past regime.
Further, Mr Ndlovu submitted that his mother Maria Thenjisiwe Ndlovu also leased a piece of land from the Municipality where she was supposed to have built a supermarket on Erf 8017 Thokoza, it was a tacit type of lease in that clause (3) of this standard agreement in cases of hostel leases stated that: The lessee is desirous to erect a shopping unit ( herein referred to as ‘the building) on the site at her own cost and expense and the lessee undertook to donate the building on completion thereof the site and the building are hereinafter collectively referred to as the property .
According to Mr Ndlovu, the terms of the duration of the lease as stated in the agreement which stated that: The lease period shall be for a minimum of 10 (ten) years calculated from the date of signature of this agreement of lease after this agreement shall continue for an indefinite period provided that it might be terminated by either party giving 3 (three) months written notice of such termination to the other party.
He then pointed out that the term of duration should be understood as to the way these leases were referred to as deed of sales since they were or/ and are equivalent to a title deed, except that the leases were drafted under the influence of apartheid laws. He further touched on the terms of rental, clause 4 (b) which stipulated as follows: As rental for the property the lessee shall pay to the lessor for the period calculated from the first day of the month following either the month in which the building was completed or the month in which the lessee started to do business on the property, whichever events may first occur, the applicable rental shall consist of the elements:
- The site rental in respect of the property as promulgated by regulation from time to time, plus
- Such additional amount as determined by the lessor Director of Technical Services in terms of the following formula with reference to the maintenance fund, insurance and loss of rental, namely:
- Maintenance Fund: which was approximately R 86, 46 c
- Insurance: R 9, 68c
- Reserve for loss of Rental R 80, 00 Total Monthly premium or rental R 188,82 c monthly
He questioned what the insurance amount was paid for and where this money was allocated to if not in the coffers of the municipality or council. That the terms do not specify if it was also a donation of the apartheid administration. He further questioned the following:
- Does it make any logic if a person will erect a building with own funding and also pay rentals for the same building?
- Did the council claim on behalf of the lessees during the period of displacement as the principal owners of the so-called council owned shops?
- Are these shops still in the National Asset Register as they should be, considering the fact that they were predominantly owned by government prior to the adoption of land acts after 1994?
- Why is the government quiet about the financial institutions which were involved in insuring these properties?
He submitted that in 1990 a survey was done by Mutual and Federal and buildings were valued at R800 000.00, Plant and Machinery was sitting at R50 000 and stock was R60 000 totaling to the amount of R910 000. Further submitting that it is important to note that this kind of lease applied exceptionally to the hostels although the 1036 regularisation applied across all other various leases or shop rentals including shops that were built by the municipality which were let out by the council. In 1992, they were forced to vacate the premises as result of political violence, the building was completely vandalized and they were displaced, and at some point his mother tried to engage the municipality but was sent from pillar to post until she succumbed to stress and depression, and passed on in 2004 whilst they were displaced.
In 2006, they petitioned the municipality requesting reparations and titles deeds, submitting that the municipality and the Petitions Committee (Gauteng Provincial Legislature) did nothing to assist them despite the commitments made by the Department of Finance that all claimants will be considered if they are approved as displaces, the process of verification in this regards was never implemented. Thereafter they escalated their request to the Provincial Legislature but indicated that the administrative processes, resolutions and policies were grossly compromised by these two spheres of government. Informing that while the petition processes unfolded, the following concerns were raised, amongst others:
- Some of the shops do not appear in the council’s finance department accounts database including his ‘Thothos General Dealer’. The findings by the Xayiya investigation Task Team Report found that Alberton Town Council’s Billing System, at least as it relates to the displaces, to be ineffective and insufficient. Further stated the council does not have a special credit control policy for the displaces and recommendations made by the Task Team in this regard: the council must work closely with the community of Thokoza and establish a transparent database of all people who were displaced including hostels dwellers as a result of political violence, such a database must accurately show a number of people who were displaced and as to whether they have returned
or not, this can be done, inter alia by reconciling the statistic of the council with that of community structures, to date none of these resolution were implemented, that is why he strongly believe that the town council finance database was manipulated during the period of violence somewhere in between 1992 and 1996 or so.
- That even the lease registry of the lease of council-owned shops, is nowhere to be found as it is law that it should be under the custody of the municipality.
- That some of the shops are still illegally occupied.
- That most of the shops are still operating under apartheid lease agreements in this day and age and thereby preventing rightful owners from occupying them.
- That most shops that were vacated during the displacement were billed since and currently owe huge amounts and the municipality is inconsiderate of:
- The Mandela De Klerk Agreement which resulted in the writing off municipal depths from 1984 to 31 January 1994.
- The period of displacement as a result of political violence instead the municipality is handling over such depths to the attorneys
- That some have already been sold by the municipality without proper procedure or/ and the knowledge of original lessees or first tenants.
- That the Council seek the blessing of the provincial government to retain some of the so-called council owned shop for the city and not for the initial tenants or lessees.
As for erf 1134 and 1184 Palmridge, he submitted that after the municipality had indicated that the hostel will be refurbished and be converted to family units and that in their IDP they would not cater for independent shops. He informed that he was already residing in Palmridge in 2013 when he was served with an eviction notice. He reported that he responded not only to the municipality but also got the provincial government to intervene and he wrote a letter to the Presidency and the Premiers Office. In the said letter he revoked monetary claim of R1.2 billion and requested a land swap based on his vested rights for erf 8017 Khumalo Street, or that he be given the first option to purchase the property. He then went further and proposed that in
case the money he claimed will be paid to him the price of erf 1134 and 1184 as indicated in remittance advises can be deducted so that he can be paid the difference.
He further reported that he was certain that the said letter was circulated to the Provincial Finance Department as well as in the Local Government Finance Department hence the monthly statements were issued by the municipality with the provincial government as account holder, especially since the site belonged to the province when he resubmitted his claim in 2013. In 2014, he petitioned the Gauteng Provincial Legislature requesting reparations and title deeds. His two evictions were not pursued further and all municipal services were provided for him on site.
In 2016, the site was transferred to the municipality without consideration of his engagement with both the municipality and the province in 2013 and 2014.After the real estate department was established in 2017, in 2018 he was advised by Pieter Grobler to make an application via this new department so that the processes of issuing the title deed would be facilitated, of which he made his submission but instead he was served with an eviction notice in 2018 again and still the difference of the amount he claimed is shut down to date.
Mr Ndlovu pointed out that one of the downside of the municipality functioning is that there is no centralized communication within its departments in that when one department acknowledges progress the other departments would not know or be in direct contradiction with developments in other departments.
In 2017, he was assisted by the Community Development Enterprise or Economic Development which is a subdivision of EMM Finance Department they committed that once the title deed is accessed the department will assist him with invitation of investors to develop the site. Further in 2017, Ekurhuleni EMM Department of City Planning came on site and conducted a survey, further confirming his ownership of the property. And in 2018, the EMM real estate served him with a notice of eviction.
He believed such issues need to be addressed accordingly, if not addressed there will not be harmony within the departments, frustrations to communities will become the order of the day and service delivery will be retarded in general.
In concluding his submission, Mr Ndlovu, requested the Committee to assist in all these challenges he had mentioned and that the Memorandum issued by the Gauteng Human
Settlement in response to the petition he submitted in 2014 to the Committee be implemented accordingly.
Further he requested the Committee to appoint the Task Team that will be assigned to work with the foundation in addressing these challenges once and for all so that they can attain a lasting solution to the strife faced by the business community in their region. He outlined that the Task Team must develop a clear communication strategy with the foundation so that they cover all the aspects of the challenges he had put forward and to produce better results, the foundation can appoint a business community liaison officer who will liaise with the Task Team so that they avoid the appointment of consultants who always work in isolation without involving the affected community of which they seek to assist.
4.SUBMISSIONS BY THE EKURHULENI METROPOLITAN MUNICIPALITY
The oral submissions on behalf of the Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality (Municipality) were led by the Mr M Motsapi (Mr Motsapi) and Mr M Mokoena (Mr Mokoena).
In his submission, Mr Motsapi informed that the municipality was not denying the business relationship with the petitioner and his family with regard to the shop at Thokoza hostel. With reference to the legislative regime operable at the time, the municipality’s view with regard to reparations was that checking with the insurance division, the archiving and records management was a big challenge.
Mr Motsapi reporting on insurance, explained that their understanding of the kind of relationship they had with the previous municipality was that there was no property. It was the lessee who was going to construct whatever business that would exist, so it would not have made sense to charge insurance for a building not constructed by the municipality. The insurance seemed to be related to land, because the shop/structure was not necessarily that of the municipality. The ownership thereof should have devolved through the municipality only upon termination of the agreement or conclusion of the lease.
He then reported to the issue of shop ownership and explained that it was a known fact that the Convention Act, the authority to deal with a lease holder rested with the province. Indicating that a process had been undertaken by the department to advertise widely so that families that used to occupy council-owned shops could be facilitated in terms of ownership. Bringing to
the attention of the Committee that the main issue in this matter was the lack of sub-division of the structures on that piece of land. The shop itself was within the Thokoza hostel, and the land was not subdivided. Ownership of the shop could not be given to the petitioner and his family, as it fell outside the remit of the Convention Act. However, indicating that on the area of jurisdiction the municipality had a part to play in identifying council-owned shops, and the list submitted to the province.
In concluding his submission, Mr Motsapi indicated that the Ndlovu claim was evaluated and found to be in order but the only hindrance that had worked against the Ndlovu family was the sub-division of land. There was a complexity created in that the issue was based on how a piece of land could be wholly transferred to an individual when it was occupied by different individuals. However, he made the Committee aware that that there is a sectional title ownership concept, which was a process that could be looked at, but at present the decision of the province and municipality was that for any property situated on that land to be transferred, it had to be sub-divided indicating the extent of each erf.
Mr Mokoena in his supplementary submission on behalf of the municipality, informed the Committee that on the issue of reparation, the city was governed by the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA) of 2000, and it did not provide for reparation. He further emphasised that due processes were explored to compensate for the damages and losses incurred by petitioners during the unrest of the 1990s.Indicating that one of such processes had been Mr Eric Xayiya’s Report that had dealt with the displaced who had left their homes because of the violence, and then had people illegally occupying their properties. Submitting that over 714 people had been identified as displaced, and their homes were in total disrepair. And about 618 had been returned to their homes after they had been repaired and restored to a habitable condition as a consequence of that report. He informed that the municipality was unaware of whether the Ndlovu family took part in that process. The municipalities were not empowered to deal with issues of reparations. The municipality’s position was that the Ndlovu claim fell outside its jurisdiction, and it would assist the family to escalate the matter to the relevant authority, which was the Gauteng Provincial Government.
In concluding his submission, Mr Mokoena submitted that the municipality had conducted an audit of the shops that were damaged and illegally occupied, and had been able to invite the original occupants and the numbers had been reconciled. Only those who came forward and took part in the exercise had been accounted for. The city had also taken guidance from the
Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) Act to deal with matters relating to the unrest. Submitting that the municipality had taken the Act as the legal focal point of reference, even though other commissions had been established to deal with the same matter.
5.SUBMISSIONS BY THE DEPARTMENT OF HUMAN SETTLEMENT
Ms Zanale Ndludlu, (Ms Ndludlu) led submissions to the Committee on behalf of the Department of Human Settlement (DHS).
Ms Ndluldlu briefly submitted to that the petition by Mr Ndlovu had been received previously from the Gauteng Petitions Committee, and the DHS had responded by indicating that it was guided by the Convention Act to facilitate transfers of business sites and places of worship with people who had lease agreements with the DHS by 1998. Indicating that the Act did not permit financial compensation, but rather addressed issues relating to the transfer of ownership. In following this process, the DHS liaises with the municipalities and demands a list of sites to transfer to individual beneficiaries.
In concluding her submissions Ms Ndluldlu, further stipulated that the Act also requires the DHS to advertise such properties widely. Indicating that the Department had a list of about 300 from the municipality which also included residential properties, and business and church sites. The last advert was placed in 2018, but the property that was listed by Mr Ndlovu was not in the advert. Informing the Committee that the property leased to Mr Ndlovu may not have been listed because it was not sub-divided, so it could not be transferred to him. The DHS relied on the list provided to it by the municipalities, and the files included therein. Challenges were sometimes encountered when the files were very old, but even then, the municipality would commission a company to do physical verification of tenants occupying the shops.
- INSPECTION IN LOCO
After the hearing on the petition on 17 July 2019, the Committee resolved that given the urgency of the situation in which the petitioner find hinselves, it had to carry out an inspection in loco at relevant sites within the Municipality. Accordingly, on 23 August 2019, the Committee conducted the inspection in loco within the Municipality and the following Committee Members conducted the inspection in loco:
- Hon ZV Ncitha, ANC, Eastern Cape (Chairperson);
- Hon S Shaikh, ANC, Limpopo;
- Hon S Zandamela, EFF, Mpumalanga; and
- Hon SE Mfayela, IFP, Kwa-Zulu Natal;
And the aforementioned Members were supported by the following officials:
- Mr N Mkhize, Committee Secretary;
- Adv. T Sterris-Jaffer, Committee Researcher;
- Mr S Makeleni, Committee Assistant; and
- Ms F Lombard, Parliamentary Communication Officer
In the company of Members and officials during the inspection in loco, the Committee was led by Mr M Mokoena (Strategic Advisor-City of Ekurhuleni) and Mr M Mbatha (Induna for the Thokoza Hostel). It is important to point out that the inspection in loco was also attended by Municipality officials and numerous community members.
During the inspection in loco, the Committee was led and guided to the following relevant sites:
- Stand 8017 Thokoza Hostel: In the Thokoza Hostel area, the Committee observed and confirmed the vandalisation of the shop structure itself was within the Thokoza hostel, erf 8017.
- Illegal occupied sites erven 1184 and 1134 in Palm Ridge Extension 1: The Committee was informed by a gentleman occupying one of the sites that the matter relating to both sites is subjudice. The Committee also noted that erf 1184 was 1482 kilometres squared, while erf 1134 was 7280 kilometres squared.
Following the inspection in loco, the Committee proceeded to have a debriefing at the Thokoza Customer Care, in the of City Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality, Gauteng Province.
The purpose of debriefing was to allow the petitioner and the of City Ekurhuleni to present progress reports to the Committee on the issues raised during its first petition hearing on 17 July 2017, held at Parliament.
The following stakeholders attended the hearing on the petition:
- Mr G Ndlovu, Petitioner;
- Representatives from the City of Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality; Mr. M Mokoena (Manager, Strategic Advancement and Stakeholder Management); Ms M Dubazane (Senior Specialist Land Development Planning); Mrs. NP Mafadza-Tshifars (Legal Advisor), Ms MO Nkotsoe (Legal Advisor), Ms IJ Pillay (Acting Manager Real Estate); Mr ZM Nduma (Acting Divisional Head_ Real Estate); Ms N Ntswaki (Town Planner) and Mrs. B Motimone (Land Surveyor); and
- Representatives from the Thokoza Hostel, Mr. M Mbatha (Induna for the Thokoza Hostel)
7.2.Submissions by the Petitioner
Mr G Ndlovu (Mr Ndlovu) briefly expanded on his previous submission made to the Committee. He commenced his submissions by informing that stand 8017 Thokoza hostel was operated by Thothos General Dealer through a lease agreement with the municipality. During the violence of the 90’s they were forced to vacate the premises and the property was extensively vandalized, no further business operations have been undertaken on the said premises as a result of displacement.
According to Mr Ndlovu, in 1988 the Conversion Act was enacted in terms of which lessees in government owned properties in marginalized townships could be granted freehold right.
Mr Ndlovu further informed that upon attempting to lodge a claim for the transfer of erf 8017 Thokoza hostel it became apparent that the municipality had plans to refurbish the hostel into “family units” which plans did not include individually owned shops as a result Thothos General Dealer’s vested rights were unfairly compromised.
Mr Ndlovu reported that during 2011, he occupied erf 1134 and 1184 Palm Ridge Extension 1 with a view of operating a “Multidisciplinary Centre” thereon, with the intervention of the provincial government erf 1134 was serviced with water and 1184 with water and electricity,
Mr Ndlovu further informed, that in 2017 Ekurhuleni Municipality Department of City Planning conducted a survey and thereby confirming his occupation and ownership of the property. He indicated, that he had requested to be granted a title deed as a substitute for erf 8017 which was as a result of the Council’s Integrated Development Plan’ was no longer available for business purposes, and he believes that this is an amicable outcome for all parties involved.
Mr Ndlovu further reported that based on the insurance paid directly to the municipality as per lease agreement, the issue of compensation for the building, equipment and loss of income as a result of political upheavals will be addressed separately.
In concluding his brief submissions, Mr Ndlovu cited Chapter (2) section 25, subsection (5) read with (6), (7) and (8) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, stating that no one may be deprive of property except in terms of general application, and no law may permit arbitrary deprivation of property.
- Subsection 5: The state must take reasonable legislative and other measures, within its available resources, to foster conditions which enable citizen to gain access.
- Subsection 6: A person or community whose tenure of land is legally insecure as a result of past racially discriminatory laws or practices is entitled to the extent provided by an Act of Parliament either to tenure which is legally secured or to comparable redress.
- Subsection 7: A person or community dispossessed of property after June 1913 as a result of past racially discriminatory laws or practices is entitled, to the extent provided by an Act of Parliament, either to restitution of that property or equitable redress.
- Subsection 8: No provision of this section may impede the state from taking legislative and other measures to achieve land, water and related reform, in order to redress the results of past racial discrimination.
7.3 Progress Report by the City of Ekurhuleni
Submissions on behalf of the City of Ekurhuleni (City) were led by it Legal Services and, the Town Planner officials. And in they brief submissions, they responded to the issues raised in the petition.
It was firstly submitted, that the City officials on the 31 July 2019 undertook a site inspection to qualify and confirm the whereabout of the shops/ demolished building and assess the illegal occupied sites at erven 1184 and 1134 in Palm Ridge Extension 1.
The Committee was informed that the following City officials participated in the site inspection, City Planning, Real Estate, Human Settlement, Office of the City Manager and Corporate Legal Services. Following the site visit, they agreed on the following table to address the issues regarding the petition (Progress Report).
Consolidation of the ervens/ stands
City Planning Dept.
To explore possibility of consolidating the two stands and made them avail for swop transaction.
Proclamation of the
City Planning Dept
To investigate whether the area where these stands are situated ( Palm Ridge Ext )
In concluding its brief progress report, the Committee was informed that the following response was provided by the said Insurance and Risk Division on the 5th August 2019:
- Pre Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality being promulgated into existence. All former township councils were amalgamated with the nearest larger municipality. In this instance Thokoza was amalgamated with Alberton Municipality.
- If any claims were made at the time it would have been dealt with either the Thokoza or Alberton Municipalities.
- When Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality came into existence in 2000, all the insurance portfolios were pooled into one but only active claims at the time were taken on and processed through settlement, rejection or prescription.
- The City does not have record of any claims relating to this petitioned matter.
It was pointed out that should a claim be made at that moment; the Insurance Section would not be able to deal with such a claim for three reasons namely:
The claim would have prescribed in view of the notice of intent to institute claims against an organ of state and legislation which states that such notice has to be filed within three months from date of incident.
Secondly, if such notice was filed the claim would have prescribed since it was not made within three years from date of loss. Finally, if both the above conditions were not met the claim would not be entertained by any underwriter which has underwritten CoE since coming into existence because the retroactive date issued on liability claims is 2002.
8.OBSERVATIONS AND KEY FINDINGS
The Committee made the following observations and key findings in relation to the various submissions made in relation to the subject matter of the petition:
- According to Mr Ndlovu, in 2006, the Department of Finance made a commitment that all claimants will be considered if they are approved as displaces, the process of verification in this regards were never implemented at all. In 2017, Ekurhuleni EMM Department of City Planning came on site and conducted a survey, confirming his ownership of the property.
- Mr Ndlovu informed that upon attempting to lodge a claim for the transfer of erf 8017 Thokoza hostel it became apparent that the municipality had plans to refurbish the hostel into “family units” which plans did not include individually owned shops as a result Thothos General Dealer’s vested rights were unfairly compromised. However, it was indicated to him that procedurally the access of title deed was to be facilitated by the municipality.
- Mr Ndlovu indicated that he had requested to be granted a title deed as a substitute for erf 8017 which was as a result of the Council’s Integrated Development Plan’ was no longer available for business purposes, Mr Ndlovu believe that this is an amicable outcome for all parties involved.
- Mr Ndlovu requested the Committee to appoint the Task Team that will be assigned to work with the foundation in addressing these challenges once and for all so that they can attain a lasting solution to the strife faced by the business community in they region.
- Mr Ndlovu informed that upon attempting to lodge a claim for the transfer of erf 8017 Thokoza hostel it became apparent that the municipality had plans to refurbish the hostel into “family units” which plans did not include individually owned shops as a result Thothos General Dealer’s vested rights were unfairly
compromised. However, it was indicated to him that procedurally the access of title deed was to be facilitated by the municipality.
- Representatives of the City of Ekurhuleni Metropolitan Municipality submitted that the claim had been evaluated and found to be in order, and the only hindrance that had worked against the Ndlovu family was the sub-division of land.
- The Municipality advised that there is a sectional title ownership concept, which was a process that could be looked at, but at present the decision of the province and municipality was that for any property situated on that land to be transferred, it had to be sub-divided indicating the extent of each erf.
- The City of Ekurhuleni, submitted that on the issue of reparation, the city was governed by the Municipal Finance Management Act (MFMA) of 2000, and it did not provide for reparation.
- The City has established a multi department team (Legal, City Planning and Real Estate) to look at all intricacies regarding possible swop. The City indicated that through the council make a decision on this land swop proposal as a way of concluding this petition.
- Department of Human Settlements submitted that it mandated and rely on the list that they receive from the municipality. The Convention Act did not permit financial compensation, but rather addressed issues relating to the transfer of ownership.
- The municipality to expedite settlement negotiations on the piece of land it promised to be transferred to the Ndlovu family by reaching an amicable outcome for all the parties involved. This is in terms of the proposal to consolidate and rezone the erven.
- The Committee concluded that a time frame of four months be given within which the municipality should report back to the NCOP on the outcome of the settlement negotiations. This should be done by providing the NCOP with a progress report within 120 days of the tabling of this Report in the House.
- In the process leading to the four-month period stipulated in recommendation 9.2, the municipality is requested to provide the NCOP with a monthly progress report indicating steps the municipality has taken to facilitate and action the proposed settlement negotiations with the Ndlovu family. This should include the following:
- Progress on engagement with the Department of Human Settlements in terms of the conversion of the erven; and
- Progress on engagement with the Department of Real Estate on the proposed process for the swop transaction.
- Municipality should also provide the Committee with time frames within which rezoning the erven would take place. Since it is estimated that the entire process of rezoning would take 4 months to finalise, the Municipality should provide the Committee with up to date monthly reports on rezoning the erven.
Report to be considered
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