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Quality-built Lenasia homes to stay up

Only homes that have been poorly built on government land in Lenasia will be demolished.

A woman tries to stop a bulldozer from demolishing a house in Lenasia's Extension 13 in southern Johannesburg, on 9 November 2012. Picture: Werner Beukes/SAPA

JOHANNESBURG - Human Settlements Minister Tokyo Sexwale on Tuesday said only houses that were found to have been built poorly with material that did not meet legal standards, would be demolished.

The minister said that was one of the recommendations made by the Special Lenasia Intervention Team, which he set up to resolve the controversial demolition of more than 80 houses built on illegally sold government land.

Sexwale said he was pleased the team had been able to find speedy resolutions, as the construction of new homes is scheduled to begin next month.

He said all structures built on the disputed land in Lenasia would undergo inspection to determine whether they would be destroyed or not.

Sexwale said residents affected by the illegal sale of land would be given an opportunity to benefit from government's new housing plans, but only if they came clean.

"Some people have to explain. This mansion, where do you get the money? You don't have a bond."

The minister said government's aim was not to devalue legally built homes in the area, saying they will no longer be building low cost houses only.

He added that government's new housing plans would also allow individuals who did not qualify for bank loans to afford homes.