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Lenasia residents to get new legal homes

Residents who lost their homes during the Lenasia demolitions will get new houses next year.

Residents who lost their homes during the Lenasia demolitions will get new houses next year.

JOHANNESBURG - Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale on Tuesday said the tractors that demolished houses in Lenasia during November will return to the area on Wednesday.

But this time, the minister said the tractors will not destroy homes that were built on illegally sold land.

Instead, they will be removing rubble and preparing ground for the construction of new, legal buildings.

In November, Sexwale appointed a team to resolve tensions in the area following the demolition of more than 80 structures.

He said the construction of legal homes will begin in January.

"From January, we will be turning [Lenasia] into one major construction site."

Sexwale said this formed part of the recommendations made by the Special Lenasia Intervention Team.

The team was appointed by the minister after the Gauteng Housing Department and the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) agreed to reach an out-of-court settlement.

The SAHRC had approached the South Gauteng High Court, arguing that the residents' rights had been violated by the demolitions.