Happy Valley shacks demolished

A Happy Valley resident dismantles his shack.

The City of Cape Town has sent two “illegally settled families” packing from the Happy Valley settlement in a site visit on Thursday February 8.

The visit, by regional co-ordinator of informal settlement management for the City of Cape Town, Anton Terblanche, and Ward 23 councillor Nora Grose was prompted by the article Tabletalk published about the fears residents of Happy Valley had about the settlement expanding (“Future uncertain for Happy Valley,” Tabletalk, January 31).

Happy Valley resident Francien Bodkin said the two City officials walked around the camp and spoke to people living in shacks close to the settlement.

“He (Mr Terblanche) asked the people what their reasons were for being here and why they left their homes. When they told him they were from Atlantis, he said they must go back home but no one has left yet,” said Ms Bodkin.

Ms Bodkin said she was happy about this as they did not want the settlement getting any bigger.

She also said Ms Grose asked two shacks to be thrown down in the Happy Valley settlement.

“She said the men living in the two shacks must throw their shacks down and rebuild it next to their families’ shacks because they fell under one name on the City’s list,” she said.

Tabletalk asked Ms Grose if she had made this request but she said she would allow the City to comment on erf 1117.

“Mr Terblance advised two illegally settled families who admitted that they came from Atlantis to return to their families in Atlantis,” said the City of Cape Town in response to our media enquiry.

A resident living close to erf 1117 and who wanted to remain anonymous, said the site needed to remain on the City’s agenda.

“The facts are that erf 1117 is inhabited by illegal shack dwellers other than the Happy Valley contingent already, and they are growing at an alarming pace.

“Added to this, there are no santitation facilities, and no water. Surely this is a heath violation, not only for the inhabitants of the illegal shacks, but also the surrounding residents,” she said.