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Pensioner fights for her house

By unknown | Feb 21, 2007 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Dudu Busani

For nine years a Soweto pensioner has been engaged in a fight with her "tenant" over the ownership of a house she says is hers.

This because he had the house transferred into his name behind her back.

Lwanisa Ngoveni said her problems started in 1991 when she left tenant James Mongwe to look after her house when she went to Giyani, Limpopo, to bury her husband.

Ngoveni, 63, decided to stay in Giyani for a while because she trusted Mongwe would keep her house safe.

"Once in a while I would come to check my house, which was still being occupied by Mongwe."

But Ngoveni said that she was shocked to learn that her tenant was the new owner of the house when she decided to come back home permanently in 1998.

"When I arrived I was asked to sleep in the lounge because all the rooms were occupied. When I asked why, Mongwe produced a title deed that showed he was the owner of the house. He told me to leave," she said.

Ngoveni said she immediately went to Kliptown police station to report the matter.

"The police forced him to let me stay at the house while the matter was being sorted out."

Though Ngoveni said that since 1998 she has been to the provincial housing department, the National Prosecuting Authority and the Human Rights Commission, the problem still remains unresolved.

Sowetan is in possession of court documents detailing how the ownership of the house was transferred to Mongwe. According to the documents, the house was given to Mongwe because it was Ngoveni's husband's wish. But he died before the transfer was finalised.

The documents also state the transfer was completed after Ngoveni failed to attend court proceedings because she was untraceable.

Gauteng housing spokesman Mandla Sidu said the department was dealing with a plethora of cases involving disputes over property ownership. Sidu advised Ngoveni to open a fraud case.


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