GEORGE NEWS - Land invasion is an ongoing concern, with an alarming number of attempts reported during lockdown.
Earlier this week law enforcement officers removed unoccupied structures in an area in Thembalethu called Robben Island.
According to the Director of Protection Services, Steven Erasmus, the persons attempting to invade the land live in brick and mortar houses, and allegedly intended to rent out the informal structures to supplement their income. "The land is earmarked for development which will be beneficial to the Thembalethu community. Only unoccupied structures are being removed," said Erasmus.
Meanwhile vegetation between Rosedale and Thembalethu has been cleared over several weeks, through constant burning, to make way for more residential structures. Residents with a view of the area said the burning follows a distinct pattern. "First they burn the vegetation, then they start building in the clearing. Once more structures have been erected, the burning of more vegetation continues." Erasmus said George Municipality is addressing the matter.
Development of an informal settlement in Hoogekraal near Glentana is also still going strong. Last week George Herald published the account of a farmer who daily witnesses the growth of the settlement. In his comment last week, Municipal Manager Trevor Botha said the municipality is aware of the extraordinary growth of certain informal areas, but that it is difficult to address the situation in the current abnormal conditions of the Covid-19 lockdown period.
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