EHC’s George Xaba accused of enriching himself “from poor’s suffering”

EHC's George Xaba accused of enriching himself
George Xaba

The tenants want to go to war in order to get the homes to be rent-to-buy homes rather than “renting forever”.

EMalahleni Housing Company head George Xaba is being accused of turning people’s plight into a “money-making scheme”.

The residents of Dingindoda in eMalahleni are vowing they will fight Xaba and the eMalahleni housing company until the homes are no longer rental homes but “rent-to-buy homes.”

Dingindoda residents during the meeting

They say initially when the houses were being constructed they were told that they would be low cost rent-to-buy homes but through political and corrupt means the Dingindoda area was turned into “a money-making scheme” by the powerfuls.

The residents now are planning a march to voice out against this and they say they will no longer pay rent to the eMalahleni housing company until 1 January 2019 when the issue of the area being rent-to-buy homes is resolved.

EHC's George Xaba accused of enriching himself
Formally known as uThingo Park, the Dingindoda rental area in eMalahleni.

Another resident told 013NEWS that she has seen a lot of people being kicked out of the government area when they fail to pay rent, especially when they lost their jobs. “It is unfair this thing that is happening here, we are sick and tired of it,” she said.

They say the eMalahleni housing company, a government rent collecting agent, is the company evicting them from their homes and is being led by “cruel people”.

On Thursday last week, both the area’s developer Themba Sgudla and local activist Bhuti Mamba addressed a fully packed hall inside the Dingindoda area and told the residents that when they die their children will suffer because they will be kicked out once nobody was able to pay rent.

They told them that the public company is collecting over R3.7 million every month and all the money goes to Xaba and the other board members “who share it among themselves” and were using a public institution to get filthy rich at the expense of poor working class people.

“For how long are you going to rent in your own area? You are the people of eMalahleni and your are being put in Egypt by people who are not from the eMalahleni area,” Sgudla said to thunderous applause.

He told the residents that the reason nobody wanted the area to be rent-and-buy homes was because of the money that they make from it, making the lives of people earning between R4 000 and R16 000 “a misery”.

He accused the company’s board of being a “self-appointed bogus board” and that there was a real board behind it that exists and were going to war in order to “unmask it”.

“Some criminals want you to rent because it makes them filthy rich at your expense and they do not care whether you lose jobs and no longer able to pay, because they will be able to kick you out of the area just like that and we are here to help you move out of the situation,” he said, adding he was encouraged by President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Thuma Mina call, “that I wanna be there when people start to turn things around” for themselves and for the better.

“I know most of you here no longer work for yourself but for your children,” Sgudla said, “what will then happen to your children if you loose your job or die and not able to pay? They will be kicked out.

“From today please go to the bank and tell them to stop these people from deducting money from your account. That is your account and nobody should take money from it and if we find out that you continue to pay to these people you will regret,” Sgudla told the residents.

EHC's George Xaba accused of enriching himself
Bhuti Mamba (L) and Themba Masofa Sgudla (R).

They say those who will continue to pay rent will get evicted from the area by the other tenants who are also fed up of “renting forever” and was challenging Xaba to come evict those who didn’t pay rent and will see “how people start to turn things around” when they are faced with a difficult situation.

Asked for comment, Xaba said he would call a press briefing and explain everything to journalists.

He said everything that the community were being told was nonsense and is going to provide all documents to journalists as where the money goes.

He added the R 3.7 million that they monthly collect doesn’t go to the government but they as board members of the eMalahleni company use it “to invest back into the area”, maintaining the area.

“I have all the documents to prove how the money is spent. We pay security, we have put tarred roads in the area. We created 50 jobs and we pay salaries, not that we enrich ourselves from the money,” Xaba said, adding that those who wanted the area to be rent-to-buy homes confusing RDPs with CRU (community rental units) and they were given the mandate to collect rent by government in order to maintain the area.

(edited by MLM)

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