Residents cry foul as houses fall apart

23 11 2010

22 Nov 2010 | Yazeed Kamaldien | Sowetan

RESIDENTS of the Newfields Village housing project in Hanover Park, Cape Town, want a building contractor who is hired by the government fired because it allegedly sold them shoddy homes.

Auditor-general Terrence Nombembe last week sent inspectors to the 2300 homes – built by the Cape Town Community Housing Company (CTCHC) – to look at their cracked walls, exposed electrical cables, damp and toilets that continuously break.

The AG’s inspectors would not comment to the media except to say that Nombembe would release a report to Parliament soon.

Read the rest of this entry »





Auditor General investigating Cape Town Community Housing Company

16 11 2010

Newfields Village Community Representative Committee
16 November 2010

Communities affected by the negligence and substandard housing built by Cape Town Community Housing Company (CTCHC) are happy to welcome inspectors from the Auditor General’s Cape Town office.

Mr Oberholzer and his team will be inspecting selected houses in the eight CTCHC built communities within the next few days.

Today’s visit included the Heideveld and Luyolloville CTCHC communities.

On Wednesday the 17th of November, the Auditor General will be visiting the CTCHC communities in Woodridge, Eastridge and Philippi.

Finally, on Thursday the 18th of November, they will visit the last CTCHC communities: Pylon, Railway and Newfields Village.

This is a partial audit of the communities. If the Auditor General finds evidence of negligence, corruption and substandard house building, they will conduct a full audit of all the houses in the CTCHC communities.

For more information on the history behind the CTCHC housing scandal, click here for previous press releases

For more information, contact Gary Hartzenberg (Newfields Village CRC) @ 072 392 5859





Cape Town Community Housing Finally meets its match!

26 05 2010

Five families in Newfields Village face their verdict for their evictions on the 10/06/2010 (on the day the opening ceremony of the World Cup 2010 will be held).

Background

In 1994 President Nelson Mandela promised to build one million houses and accordingly the City of Cape Town and the National Housing Finance Company (NHFC) tried to make this dream a reality for the poorest of the poor by forming a Section 21 Company called Cape Town Community Housing Company. Eight years ago CTCHC started to build the worst houses in the history of our country with both latent and patent defects. Accordingly, the residents of the nine villages (Newfields Village, Hanover Park Phase 1, 2 and 3, Luyoloville, East Ridge, Woodridge, Manenberg (Tornado Victims) and Phillipi) went on a rental boycott, had marches to the Company, they occupied their administration office, they handed over numerous memorandums of demands and even occupied the administration building in Tijger Valley. The company changed directorship, because of bad management of fances and the pressure from the different communities. All that the community wants is to honour the original understanding and agreements made that they will get a subsidized houses and pay-off the balance over four years with affordable rental.

Read the rest of this entry »





Media: Delay in sentence for fraud attorney

1 11 2009

October 30, 2009 Edition 2
Jade Witten – Cape Argus

A FORMER attorney convicted of misappropriating R400 000 in trust money is to be sentenced in the Bellville Commercial Crimes Court next month. Read the rest of this entry »





Media: Magistrate reprimands ex-lawyer facing 51 fraud charges

10 06 2009

Note: For more information on this case, contact Gary Hartzenberg at 072 3925859
Photo: INLSA

June 09, 2009 Edition 1
Lavern de Vries
Source: Cape Argus

THE TRIAL of a former attorney charged with defrauding hundreds of Cape Flats families of millions was due to get under way today, five years after he allegedly fled the country.

Carl John Botman appeared in the Bellville Commercial Crimes Court yesterday and was reprimanded by magistrate Amrith Shabilall for delaying the trial. Read the rest of this entry »





Trial of attorney who stole R2-million from poor residents of Cape Town low-cost housing villages

5 06 2009
Newfields Village Press Release on behalf of the 9 CTCHC villages
5 June 2009 – For immediate release

The trial of attorney Mr C. J. Botman will take place on the 8th, 9th, and 10th of June, 2009 at Bellville Magistrates Court.

Mr Botman is being charged for steeling about R2-million from the residents of the 9 Cape Town Community Housing Company (CTCHC) villages. The lawyer had opened a trust account where residents paid their rent as they were boycotting rental payments to CTCHC. Somehow, Mr. Botman was able to swindle the money out of the trust fund and then flee the country.

Residents originally began boycotting CTCHC because the houses began to fall apart and the company began raising rents despite advertising low rents under R350. Mr. Botman stole the rent money from the same poor people who are now facing eviction for their rent boycott.

Over 1,000 families have been affected by the theft and residents of the 9 villages are organising a full bus for families who are testifying at the trial.

For more information, contact Gary Hartzenberg at 0723925859

See also this list of articles about CTCHC communities





Eastridge community facing evictions despite ongoing negotiations with CTCHC

30 04 2009

Eastridge Anti-Eviction Campaign Press Release
30 April, 2009

A whole family (actually 6 families living in one home) residing at No.17 Emery Street in Eastridge “Smartie Town” in Mitchell’s Plain has been unfairly and unlawfully evicted. Now, at least 20 more families are slated to be evicted in Eastridge.

Cape Town Community Housing Company (CTCHC) evicted the families about two weeks ago. The family is currently living in a cupboard in front of their house and all their furniture and possessions have been destroyed by the rain. CTCHC is now fixing the house for someone else because it stands to make money off of the eviction. Read the rest of this entry »





AEC actions and events – April 22 to May 1

30 04 2009

A lot has happened in AEC communities in the past week.  Here are some links:

  • April 22 – AEC communities such as Newfields Village, Symphony Way, Leiden, Athlone, Gugulethu, Crossroads refused to vote in this year’s elections.
  • April 27 – Symphony Way AEC hosted the Anti-Eviction Campaign’s first annual un-Freedom Day with participation from four other Delft communities, residents of QQ Section in Khayelitsha, and the Gugulethu and Athlone AEC.  The event included the following activities: soccer, netball, youth plays, discussions and a braai for all participants.
  • April 29 – Cape Town Community Housing Company (CTCHC) illegally evicted a Town Centre (Mitchell’s Plain) family and plans to evict many more.  Call Johannes at 071-416-0250 for more information.

Upcoming AEC issues and events to follow:

  • April 30 – Residents of Town Centre in Mitchell’s Plain will resist any eviction that takes place.  Call Johannes at 071-416-0250 for more information about future actions.  Press release on the situation to follow tomorrow night.
  • April 30 (noon) – Gugulethu AEC surprise action this morning.  Call Mncedisi at 078-580-8646 for more information.
  • May 1 (daytime) – New AEC branch in Old Crossroads will hold a mass meeting Friday May 1.  Call Mncedisi at 078-580-8646 for info, contact and directions.
  • May 1 (evening) – Symphony Way AEC to host a karaoke benefit in Delft to raise funds for upcomming eviction case.  Call Aunty Jane at 078 403 1302 or Mnce Plaajies at 079 305 1066 for information about the case and the benefit.




Cape Town community housing company AGAIN fails to repair substandard houses, leaving us without doors and doorframes!

9 03 2009

Newfields AEC Press Statement

The Newfields Village community has once again been left in limbo by the Cape Town community housing company (CTCHC) which has stopped repairs to the defective Hanover Park houses, claiming it has no more money.

We are baffled by this because even though the city sold off its shares in CTCHC last year, it is still a public entity now owned by the National Housing Finance Corporation which falls under department of housing.

The national home builders regulatory council says it won’t issue certificates to say our houses are structurally sound because the doors and doorframes are falling apart.

At the same time we are expected to pay rent for these houses, which have always been structurally unsound and which continue to be unsound and unsafe for us.

We believe money was allocated for our house repairs, as a result of our long struggle (see history below).

So where is this money now?

We demand the proper house repairs we were promised.

For more information, please call Newfields Village Anti-Eviction Campaign co-ordinator Gary Hartzenberg on 0723925859

BACKGROUND:

2 400 low cost houses were built by the Cape Town Community Housing Company (CTCHC) between 1994 and 2000. Read the rest of this entry »





Newfields CLO distances himself from CTCHC

2 02 2009
To: All Media:
From: Newfields Village Anti-Eviction Campaign
Re: Shortcuts in Remedial Programme of Newfileds Village.  CLO distances himself and blames CTCHC.
Sunday, February 1, 2009

On 21 January, contractors for Newfields council homes refused to complete remedial work on our homes.  After last weeks progress meeting between the Community Liaison Officer (CLO) Gary Hartzenberg and Cape Town Community Housing Company (CTCHC), it was established that MEC Whitey Jacobs had refused in August 2008 to fund repairs to our doors, frames, electricity connections, floors, ceilings and firewalls and that the MEC requested CTCHC treat these repairs as part of owners maintenance.  This contradicts what MEC Jacobs has put on record in meetings with representatives from the 9 CTCHC villages (Woodridge, Eastridge, Luyoloville, Railway, Philippi, Newfields, Mannenberg, Morgan’s Village and Royal Maitland).   CTCHC did not inform the residents or the CLO about the MEC’s refusal until last week – six months later.  The community of Newfields Village is extremely upset that they have been lied to and misinformed about the progress on fixing their homes.

Accordingly, the CLO, has forwarded a letter to the CTCHC which states that he is distancing himself from his duties as CLO for CTCHC because it is hiding relevant information from the community.  CTCHC is attempting to coopt the CLO into working against the interests of the community and the CLO has refused to do so even if it means that he may soon be fired.  Hartzenberg stated: “I will not be party to this.  I will not support CTCHC as they attempt to cut corners during the necessary remedial program on our homes.”

For more information contact Fuad and Gary at 072 392 5859

For the history of corruption and mismanagement by CTCHC, click here.








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