From the news desk

City warns against housing scams

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The City of Cape Town has warned potential subsidised housing beneficiaries against paying money towards individuals who promise guaranteed housing opportunities. The City has launched an investigation into several cases where members of the public have been duped into forking out ‘placement fees’ for registration onto the housing database, with the deal ultimately proving to be nothing more than a scam.

“We are seeing cases where people are being enticed to pay money to get onto the list, as well as to access a house,” said Mayco member for Human Settlements, Councillor Benedicta van Minnen.

The City has assured that it does not charge beneficiaries who are able to access housing, be it for a place on the list or for the actual accessing of a housing unit.

While little information has come forth on the alleged scammers, Van Minnen said should it it be found that any City housing officials are involved in the scam, a case of fraud would be opened against them.

“Also the City’s own disciplinary procedures would be invoked. We are treating this in a various serious light,” she assured.

The procedure to become an approved beneficiary requires an applicant to earn no more than R3500 a month. Applicants will need to approach their nearest housing office to apply, and should they be approved, they will remain on the list until a housing opportunity becomes available.

Van Minnen reiterated her call for potential beneficiaries not to be duped into making any suspect payments.

“What happens in cases like this are that genuine beneficiaries are excluded, people are duped out of their opportunity, and it does stop delivery and means that we are unable to deliver to the maximum number of people that we need to in terms of our mandate,” she added.

Details of the City’s respective housing offices can be found at the website https://www.capetown.gov.za/en/Housing/Pages/Housinglist.aspx. VOC (Mubeen Banderker)


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