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R170,8 million more for additional security to protect City land <ul><li><div style="text-align:left;">​The spate of unlawful occupations has led to the establishment of 54 new settlements of various sizes across the city since the start of the national Covid-19 lockdowns from March 2020. A subsequent court ruling, which is being challenged, has also impacted the City’s efforts to prevent unlawful occupation. </div></li><li><div style="text-align:left;">More than R300 million is estimated to be required were the City able to service the newly unlawfully occupied areas, where it is possible to do so and 70% of the unlawful occupations have occurred on unsuitable land. City assessments continue. </div></li></ul><p>Images: file photos of flooding and the City’s ‘Illegal Occupation Hurts Us All’ campaign to prevent the health and safety risks associated with unlawful occupation on unsuitable land. </p><p>This brings the total budget allocated for protecting City land to prevent the negative fall outs of unlawful occupation to approximately R252 million in the new financial year. Unlawful occupation carries great health and safety risks for those who occupy unsuitable land. It is also a threat to planned projects, programmes and the future development of Cape Town as a whole. Many new settlements are demanding immediate service provision, despite the fact that most were created on unsuitable land. </p><p>‘The majority of the unlawful occupations have been driven by ‘shack-farming’ and illegal electricity connection syndicates. In addition, many of the unlawful occupations have been politically instigated. As we can see again with the recent flooding, these instigators are nowhere to be seen when the flooding starts. </p><p>‘The City does everything in its power to pre-emptively protect municipal-owned land earmarked for community use, housing and bulk services. As a society, we must discourage unlawful occupations in general, and especially where it is dangerous for illegal occupants and surrounding communities alike. We remain committed to protecting the rightful beneficiaries of affordable housing opportunities and to prevent situations where earmarked projects and beneficiaries suffer as a result of limited public funds being diverted to newly invaded areas. Recent unlawful occupations have further impacted on biodiversity land and river systems.</p><p>‘Local government cannot solve the great need for affordable accommodation on its own. It takes all three spheres of government, the private sector, and residents working with us. Urgent policy and legislative reforms are needed to address the major obstacles to human settlements delivery, which include unlawful occupations, National Government budget cuts, a weak national economy and regulatory red tape. <br> <br>‘The City’s Human Settlements Directorate spent 98% of its Urban Settlement Development Grant capital budget in the 2019/2020 financial year, despite the Covid-19 impact. It shows we spend the money we get for human settlements, but the need is acute. The City’s Human Settlements Strategy, which is serving before Council this week, contains a profound shift to enable the greater provision of affordable housing opportunities, based on partnerships and new ways of delivery. </p><p>‘We are utterly committed to enhancing opportunities for our residents in a legal, inclusive and organised manner that makes Cape Town stronger,’ said the City’s Mayoral Committee Member for Human Settlements, Councillor Malusi Booi. </p><p><br><strong>End</strong><br> <br></p>2021-05-25T22:00:00ZGP0|#1d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70;L0|#01d539e44-7c8c-4646-887d-386dc1d95d70|City news;GTSet|#62efe227-07aa-45e7-944c-ceebacca891dGP0|#cee98527-2114-4029-8173-aee474e6c8a5;L0|#0cee98527-2114-4029-8173-aee474e6c8a5|land invasion;GTSet|#2e3de6c1-9951-4747-8f53-470629a399bb;GP0|#f0dba6d6-5c41-4f7b-b5d2-9d8e5184ca97;L0|#0f0dba6d6-5c41-4f7b-b5d2-9d8e5184ca97|land10

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