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Illegal building must be demolished


The buildings structures on the erf are declared illegal as they were not approved by the municipality

The building in Beaconsfield that is to be demolished. Picture: Danie van der Lith

THE SOL Plaatje Municipality is clamping down on illegally erected structures and buildings – starting in Beaconsfield, where an illegally erected building is being used as a “drug den and brothel”, according to neighbours.

In January, the Northern Cape High Court granted an order for the eviction and demolition of part of the buildings/structures on Erf 1842 (11 Cape Town Road) in Beaconsfield.

According to the order, the buildings structures on the erf are declared illegal as they were not approved by the municipality.

The use of the property, as student accommodation and/or a tuck shop, is also declared illegal and the land is to be solely used for a dwelling house, according to its current zoning certificate.

It is further ordered that the first respondent in the matter, Mahomed Anowar Pervez, commence with the lawful eviction against the unidentified occupants of the property from the erf within 10 days of the order and if he fails to comply with the order, the municipality is authorised to proceed with eviction proceedings.

Pervez will be liable for all costs of eviction proceedings embarked on by him or the municipality.

Pervez is also ordered to demolish the portion of the buildings/structures situated on the erf that have not been approved by the municipality, within 10 days from the date on which the occupants have been evicted.

If Pervez fails to demolish the buildings, the municipality is authorised and ordered to commence with demolishing the buildings, within 10 days of expiry of the 10-day period allowed for Pervez to demolish the buildings.

Pervez will be liable for costs with regard to the demolition.

Yesterday, almost three months after the order was granted, the illegally erected buildings have still not been demolished. The premises do, however, appear deserted and empty rooms can be seen through a steel door.

Neighbours and residents in the area say that the property has become an “absolute nightmare” since being converted into student accommodation – something they say is just a front for the “drug den and brothel” that they claim the property is used for.

“The noise, open drug use and prostitution became a nightmare for residents. We just couldn’t take it any more,” they stated, but added that it seemed as if the occupants had recently been evicted.

They said that 21 rooms had been constructed on the premises as “student accommodation”.

“A storeroom on the premises was made into a double storey for the student rooms. The rooms are extremely small, barely big enough to fit a single bed. There is no ventilation and some of the rooms have no windows. It is filthy and not suitable for humans,” neighbours said.

They also asked why the municipality had not yet intervened, after being granted a court order to demolish the illegally constructed buildings.

Municipal spokesperson Sello Matsie yesterday confirmed the court order stating that the occupants should be evicted and the building be demolished; and said that the municipality was now in the process of obtaining a second court order that would enable it to start with the eviction and demolition process.

The DFA was unable to trace the owner of the building for comment yesterday.