The City of Johannesburg has declared war on building hijackers.
City of Johannesburg Mayor Herman Mashaba, described this practice as a humanitarian crisis and is determined to put this to an end so that South Africans who are in need of affordable housing can receive it.
Around 85 hijacked buildings have been identified by the city. They will be raided in an effort to clamp down on crime.
Mashaba says that this issue was uncovered when he took office just under a year ago. It is a mystery that a breakdown of law and order happened under their watch,he added.
We are going to intensify the raids and profile the people in these buildings.— Mayor Herman Mashaba, City of Johannesburg
One of the biggest issues associated with hijacked buildings is the fact that they could be used to provide affordable housing in the city for South Africans who need it.
Mashaba says that 300 000 people today are in need of houses in the city. There are 152 000 people on a waiting list who expect the executive mayor to find them accommodation.
The City will be requesting proposals from developers to develop high rise affordable accommodation. Mashaba says he will assist these developers.
While doing the raids, we realised that 80% of the people in the buildings are foreign nationals. Some of them are here legally, some of them are here illegally.— Mayor Herman Mashaba, City of Johannesburg
When it comes to providing affordable accommodation, Mashaba says his focus is on South African citizens. He says that he is working at local government level, not national. It is up to the national government to find solutions for the foreign nationals he concludes.
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This article first appeared on 702 : Hijacked building raids to intensify