Residents of Mngqesha Village outside King William’s Town have called on Eastern Cape premier Phumulo Masaulle to intervene in local disputes over land compensation.
During a recent community meeting, residents shared their stories of how they and their families were forced off of their land by the apartheid government.
They claimed local local government had done little to address the inequalities which still remained despite nearly 25 years of democratic rule.
“We held several meetings with the officials from [the department of] land affairs from East London and we submitted our necessary documents. “Nothing happened and, instead, they play hide and seek and we are very tired. It seems that they fool us or have no cares about us.
“Enough is enough and now we are very angry about empty promises,” said one anonymous resident.
Other residents were upset because, according to them, residents in other areas have received compensation while they continue to be ignored.
Zwelitsha resident Zolisa Ndlumbini says he has been left fighting his own family who have accused him of stealing the money that was meant to have been provided as compensation.
The truth is, Ndlumbini said, the money never arrived despite his family presenting the department with all the correct documents.
Ndlumbini’s cousin, Andile Junday, said the money was meant to have been delivered last year and that many other residents were in the same position. They accuse the government of fraudulently withholding their payments.
“As a beneficiary of land compensation, I am appealing to all government officials people to handle this matter and to keep us updated.”
Attempts to get comment from the department of land affairs were unsuccessful at the time of going to print.