Sanral to address Nomzamo inquiry

The roads agency has been blamed for the forced eviction of hundreds of informal settlers.

Tensions broke out in Nomzamo informal settlement near Strand outside Cape Town as residents fought to avoid eviction ON 3 June 2014. Picture: Carmel Loggenberg/EWN.

CAPE TOWN - The ministerial inquiry into the evictions of Nomzamo informal settlers near Lwandle in Strand will today hear submissions from the South African National Roads Agency Limited (Sanral).

The move saw informal dwellers, many of them children, forced into the cold while watching their shacks being torn down by law enforcement authorities.

On Monday the commission tried to clarify how many people were evicted.

The Ses'khona Peoples Rights Movement maintains more than 800 shacks were demolished.

The movement's Loyiso Nkohla says, "In each shack, you cannot out of the blue be able to show or identify and say there were so many people here."

The inquiry has also questioned submissions made by human rights group Access to Justice Association of Southern Africa (Ajasa), which claims pregnant women were injured by police.

The group says at least two pregnant women were hurt at the hands of police while being evicted.

The association made its submissions on Monday.

Ajasa says a pregnant woman was harmed during the eviction process while another suffered a miscarriage.

The association's Sheena Jonker says it's believed one person also committed suicide as a result of the evictions.

"A young man of about 21 committed suicide. I am yet to consult with his family but they are available this week."

But the commission has disputed these allegations, with one official questioning why the incidents were not reported to the Independent Police Investigative Directorate.

Meanwhile, more than a month later about 200 homes have been rebuilt on the same piece of Sanral-owned land while authorities make more permanent living arrangements for the community.

Residents are in the process of moving back.