Sub-Council 17 chairperson rejects relocation of those living on Langa train line to M/Plain

Sub-Council 17 Chairperson, Elton Jansen, says he doesn’t support the relocation of those living on the Central Line in Langa, to the Phillipi wedge.

Jansen made the remarks after Transport Minister, Fikile Mbalula, addressed leaders from informal settlements located on the railway reserve in Langa, Philippi and Khayelitsha, on Thursday. This was at an event to sign an agreement for their relocation, known as a “social compact.”

The Central Line was completely closed in October 2019. The line has since reopened, but currently runs between Pinelands to Bellville via Langa, Bontheuwel and Belhar.

It’s understood will be relocated to the Phillipi wedge, which is next to Siqalo informal settlement in Mitchell's Plain. Jansen described the relocation as a ‘’joke and completely ludicrous’’.

‘’The current informal settlement in the wedge, Siqalo, is next to the proposed site. This is going to put more strain on our electrical infrastructure as illegal electricity connections will increase, as is the current status quo. Crime will increase and poses a risk to the farming operation in the PHA as well as the Philippi Childrens Centre.’’

The Housing Development Agency submitted an Emergency Housing application on behalf of PRASA, but is awaiting the go-ahead from the City of Cape Town due processes.

‘’I want to assure the residents that Sub-Council 17 will NOT support this application and will strongly argue against it. PRASA's plan to dump people in an area with no amenities, no sufficient schools, no basic services or bulk infrastructure, is a sign that they do not care about these people at all.  This will be another dumping of people in no man's land, which will have a negative impact on the host community as well as the people of Langa,’’ said Elton-Enrique Jansen, Sub-Council 17 Chairperson and Ward 43 Councillor.

According to Jansen, the relocation will cause harm for Mitchell's Plain residents

‘’I want to state for the record that we all support the reopening of the Central Line.  We need our trains to run on time and efficiently again BUT I DO NOT SUPPORT the relocation to the Philippi Wedge. The residents of Mitchell’s Plain and the Philippi Horticultural Area CANNOT pay the price for PRASA's failure to protect their own properties which led to the illegal occupation of the Central Line which grew into an informal settlement.  We also cannot reward unlawful occupation.’’


Done By: Mitchum George


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