Evicted families forced to endure cold and wet weather

Steenvilla evictees have vowed that they will not go anywhere until the landlord finds them alternative accommodation. Photo by Bernard Chiguvare

A property investments has failed to find alternative accomodation for evicted Steenvilla residents exposing them to cold and wet weather over the weekend in Cape Town.

Steenberg, Cape Town, South Africa

Evicted Steenvilla complex residents in Steenberg claim that they have been out on the streets since Thursday because they dont have elsewhere to go and that the authorities have not find them alternative accommodation.

Evicted from Steenvilla on Thursday, most of them could not afford paying rent required by SOHCO Property Investments which owns Steenvilla complex.  During the wet and cold weather on Saturday, the evictees were out on the streets with their families including children and their furniture.

Cape Town Disaster Management supplied them with tents after the South African Weather Services issued a statement on Friday that there is continuos rainfall leading to floods in Cape Metropole.

When Elitsha visited them on Saturday most had taken shelter in tents. All their furniture was covered by black tents.

In an effort to find out how they spend the wet Friday night, Elitsha spoke to some evictees whom the majority were women.

“Though I was in tent rainfall came through and it was very difficult for me to spend the night with the two children in that condition. There was water all over our tent. My neighbour in Steenvilla came to my rescue. She took the one year old baby and the other three year old for the night at her place,” says Nadia Jantjies.

Jantjies moved in Steenvilla in 2010 from Lavender Hills. She and her husband can not afford paying the monthly rentals as they are both now unemployed.

The one year old baby is still breast feeding. Nadia felt very much disturbed when she spend the whole night without breast feeding the child.

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“I was not allowed in the complex so the neighbour took care of my children. In the morning when she brought back the children she told me the baby was crying throughout the night. I felt bad,” she says.

Mandisa Ndzila who spent the whole night with her child in the tent said, “I have nowhere to go. I am worried my child is going to get sick if we continue staying in such conditions.”

She had wrapped her one year old baby in warm blankets.

The evictees are waiting the 15 June 2017 court outcome.

“We won’t go anywhere despite the bad weather. Our case is to be heard in court and we hope the court will rule in favour of us,” says Yvette Greeft one one the evictees leader.

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About Bernard Chiguvare 56 Articles
Originally from Zimbabwe and since 2014 I been contributing to different publications in South Africa. My area of focus as a reporter is on the rights of vulnerable communities and foreign nationals in any country.