Thousands of people need a place to live, says political party
ECONOMIC Freedom Fighters councillors in Bela-Bela, Limpopo, are leading land invasions as they claim people don’t have places to stay.
Police had to be called in to quell the situation and remove the invaders by force.
The EFF, however, said it would not back down and would continue to lead the charge for people to have access to land.
EFF councillor at Bela-Bela municipality Sello Mosoeu said the large numbers of people without a place to stay was the driving force behind their action.
“We want to occupy that land because we have over thousands of people who are in need of that land. We as the EFF promised people the land and we are going to take it.
“We have written a letter to the municipality demanding answers on why we cannot occupy that land. They told us that we must give them seven working days to respond to it and if we do not agree with what the municipality says, we are going to occupy it by force,” he said.
Mosoeu said that they were doing what they promised their supporters when they elected them to power and are not willing to let their people down.
He added that the issue of land was a crisis and the municipality knows that as well.
Bela-Bela municipality spokesperson David Raborolo said police were called because the EFF members did not follow the proper procedures and they opened a criminal case against the councillors.
“We even had a meeting with the mayor and Exco Members, SAPS and the EFF where we made it clear to them that since the EFF is familiar with the relevant sub-committees or the council where they can raise their issues, they must follow such procedures.
“We told them to write a letter to the Council so we include that item on the agenda where their grievances will be discussed,” said Raborolo.
He said that in the letter that the EFF sent, they threatened to proceed with the land grab should the municipality take their time to respond to it.
He said that they were not worried because there is an area that the municipality has identified which will benefit approximately 700 people and they have already built 20 houses.
“We acknowledge as a municipality that there is a shortage of houses, however, we are currently in the process of applying for housing from the Department of COGHSTA. We encouraged the disgruntled EFF members to also apply for these houses and if they qualify then they will also benefit,” Raborolo said.
He said that before the municipality provides land for human settlement, it has to service it first.
“We must be able to provide water and electricity to the land that we identify as human settlement,” he said.