City of Cape Town in bitter battle after construction approval

Posted On Thursday, 01 May 2014 12:26 Published by
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Bitter battle is looming after the City of Cape Town approved the construction of 600 housing units, a school and a private nature reserve on the farm Uitkamp in Durbanville.

Cape Town

Despite a pending high court application to stop the development, the farm is on a wetland. The Durbanville Community Forum said it will complain to public protector Thuli Madonsela. It is also considering taking the matter to court to prevent the decision from being implemented.

Environmental Affairs and Planning MEC Anton Bredell gave the development the go-ahead last year. However, it was seemingly put on hold when the forum sought a review. But the residents were surprised when the matter appeared in the council's agenda on Thursday with a recommendation for approval.

The forum wrote to Bredell and council speaker Dirk Smith to have it withdrawn, but to no avail. Danny St Dare, an executive member of the forum, confirmed that residents would approach Madonsela about the matter.

The DA majority approved the development after the ANC caucus was ejected from the chamber following its refusal to accept Smith's ruling on the conduct of one its councillors.

"We believe the decision was procedurally flawed and we have major concerns regarding the protection of the wetland," said Dare.

"The decision was procedurally incorrect, with the main opposition party having been kicked out. It really doesn't make for good democratic decision-making."

 Tony Ehrenreich, the leader of the ANC in council, also weighed in, saying his party was concerned about "good arable land being used for private development".  "We believe the meeting where this decision was taken was unconstitutional," he said.

Last modified on Thursday, 01 May 2014 12:48

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