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Nomzamo residents to stay

It’s been decided that Nomzamo residents will be re-settled on the same land they were evicted from.

A woman weeps after her shack was destroyed by fire as police carried out mass evictions in Nomzamo near Strand in Cape Town on 3 June 2014. Picture: Carmel Loggenberg/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - A decision has been reached to re-settle squatters, who were evicted in Nomzamo, on the same piece of land they were removed from.

The Minister of Transport Dipuo Peters says it has given the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral) a directive to withdraw a court interdict relating to the eviction of informal settlers.

The dramatic evictions earlier this week sparked outrage and the matter will now be investigated by the Human Settlements Department.

Sanral has come under fire by government and civil society groups after it forcibly removed Nomzamo residents from their homes on Monday and Tuesday this week.

Sanral obtained a court interdict to have community members evicted, as the land they were occupying is privately owned.

The roads agency revealed it has plans to use the land to build roads.

But mother of four Nomandlo Hako, who has been left homeless, says it's an ordeal which could have been prevented.

She says she fears for her children's wellbeing.

"I have a lot of children and there's not space there for me and my husband."

Hundreds of people are being hosted at a local community hall.

But they could very well be allowed back onto the land they've just been evicted from by next week.

A local councillor says he met with Transport Minister Dipuo Peters this week, during which it was apparently agreed they can erect their homes again.

Meanwhile, Western Cape Human Settlements MEC Bonginkosi Madikizela says it will take more than three decades to ensure everyone in the province has a home of their own.

Housing officials say there has to be a balance between building homes and improving existing infrastructure in the Western Cape.

Madikizela says giving everyone a house is a huge challenge.

"The biggest problem is that there's in-migration of about 50,000 people a year and with the current budget we are building about 11,000 houses. So, you don't have to be a rocket scientist to see the disparities."

SCHOOLING AFFECTED

Many children affected by the evictions in Nomzamo, apparently have not attended school since Monday.

Fifteen-year-old Xolelwa Pupu arrived home from school on Monday afternoon to find her shack had been torn down and her family's belongings dumped in the street.

She says some children's school uniforms and stationary were destroyed during the evictions.

Pupu says they are in desperate need of help from authorities.

"I didn't go to school today because I didn't have clothes to wear. Some of us don't have books, our books are wet. I don't have clothes, I only have this uniform."

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