Kitchen assistant is just a stirrer‚ judge tells Bromwell Street lawyer
Farren Collins | 2017-01-31 18:15:58.0
David Harrison show protest by and on behalf of Bromwell St residents on Saturday Aug 27.
Image by: David Harrison
“She’s not an expert‚ she’s a kitchen assistant.”
That was the assessment of Acting Judge Leslie Weinkove on Tuesday after he heard the submission of a Woodstock resident trying to avoid being sent to a relocation centre on the fringe of Cape Town.
Residents of Bromwell Street have gone to the High Court in Cape Town in an attempt to avoid being settled in Wolwerivier‚ 30km away‚ after they were served eviction notices when their homes were sold to a private developer.
Representing the families‚ advocate Sheldon Margardie from the Ndifuna Ukwazi Law Centre told the court how resident Chantel Commando had submitted a list of 60 properties where the city could relocate the families.
Magardie was presenting evidence which he said showed the city council had not done enough to find better alternatives for the residents. But Weinkove was not impressed.
“You need to provide expert analysis‚” Weinkove said. “Mrs Commando is a kitchen assistant in Observatory and now she’s an expert? She doesn’t know the city’s budget or property evaluation.”
Earlier‚ Magardie told the court that access to schools‚ medical care and transport nodes were all problems the residents would face in Wolwerivier. He also said the court should determine if the city had exhausted all reasonable methods to find alternative accommodation.
“The city was obliged to take proximity to amenities into consideration. The question is‚ did they?”
Weinkove said he had to decide if the municipality had done its job‚ and if the proposed alternative properties were more suitable than Wolwerivier.
“When you have a person that is unemployed‚ what is the purpose of putting them near a school or transport node? This is emergency housing‚ it’s transitional until they qualify for something else.”
The city’s advocate‚ Karrisha Pillay‚ said the properties suggested by Commando were not suitable for emergency accommodation.