Bo-Kaap residents have described the postponement of an interdict application by the Blok Urban…

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Bo-Kaap residents have described the postponement of an interdict application by the Blok Urban Developers until February next year, as a mini-victory to halt the gentrification of the area. Developers want the court to stop residents from entering the site and disrupt construction. Violent clashes broke out last month, when residents tried to prevent a crane from moving onto the building site. The Bo-Kaap Civic and Ratepayers Association has also indicated that it will ask the court to review the initial sale of land in the area. Nashreen Talip is an attorney for the Bo-Kaap Civic and Ratepayers Association: ”The Bo-Kaap Civic and Ratepayers Assocation has been joined as a respondent and Blok has given us the undertaking that they won’t be moving the cranes in at the moment without giving us prior notice, we will get 72 hours notice, and we will then be bringing a review application which will run parallel with our application.” Residents say the review application is intended to determine whether proper and due processes were followed. Community Leader, Osman Shaboodien: “I think what it means is that it gives the community hope that a more in-depth look will be done into the original sale of what we will say the Blok sale, the St Moncia’s Home sale and we will then find out what is the truth. I think that’s what the hope is all about, that at least all of us can move on and that also applies to Blok or any developer for that matter. There needs to be certainty that the deal wasn’t done crookedly.” Situated on the slopes of Signal Hill, the area houses among others the oldest mosque and Muslim cemetry in South Africa. Arts and Culture Minister, Nathi Mthethwa, says a process is underway to have the Bo-Kaap declared a National Heritage Site. In a written statement, the developers say their interim interdict will remain in place. It says the premises in Lion Street was purchased from the NGO, the St Monica’s Centre legally. Work at the site will continue, but Blok says crane delivery to the site will be postponed in order to continue good-faith negotiations with the community

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