ETHEKWINI speaker, William Mapena, disallowed the Democratic Alliance’s motion, that called for the set up of a special Problem Building Unit, to be tabled at a full council meeting.
The DA’s eThekwini economic development and planning committee whip, Marlaine Nair, said the motion was meant to be tabled at the August Full Council meeting but was rejected by Mapena, even though it complied with the council rules of order.
“Mapena’s explanation for refusal was that it did not make reference to a committee to investigate or deal with the motion. The DA has, on a number of occasions, submitted motions similarly worded, and had our motions accepted,” said Nair.
In the motion, the party called for the executive committee to investigate the possibility of establishing a dedicated Problem Buildings Unit to enforce the Problem Building By-law.
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“The motion would empower the unit to liaise with SAPS, the Department of Home Affairs and any other department incidental to its functioning,” commented Nair.
“Since the commencement of the Problem Buildings by-law in 2016, the by-law has not been enforced. Because of the inaction by the city, it has failed to hold to account the owners of more than 140 problem buildings. There is no point in having a by-law if the city is not willing to implement it,” she said.
Nair made mention that the derelict buildings presented themselves as hideouts for criminals and criminal activity, creating unsafe neighbourhoods.
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