rdp debacle

IT never rains but it pours for Limpopo premier Cassel Mathale's spokesperson, Philemon Sape.

Sape has been given notice by Mathale, allegedly because he is struggling with his job.

Now his community in Tlhabine village outside Tzaneen is accusing him of occupying an RDP house and wants him to vacate it immediately.

Sape allegedly allocated the house to himself in 1999 when he was a Ward 3 councillor for the Greater Tzaneen municipality council.

The house was built on an empty stand next to his family's house near he Tlhabine Clinic.

It had been left unoccupied until early last year when Sape built a mansion in front of it.

This sparked an outcry among residents, who wanted to know how Sape came to occupy the house.

Sowetanvisited the village this week to find that Sape was upgrading the RDP house.

Speaking to Sowetan yesterday, Sape said the house had been allocated to his mother, Mapula Pingelina Sape.

Asked why it had been left unoccupied for the past 10 years he said: "My mother intended living in it but changed her mind."

Greater Tzaneen Municipality mayor Othaniel Mushwana confirmed that the house had been awarded to Sape's mother but said that if an RDP house was not used by its beneficiary it should be allocated to another needy person.

"He [Sape] came to me and we agreed that the house should be allocated to the other needy people," said Mushwana.

MEC for local government and housing Soviet Lekganyane said the department would look into the matter and take action if necessary.

Sape confirmed that he would no longer work for Mathale.

Limpopo provincial government spokesperson Mohale Nchabeleng confirmed this.

"He has been redeployed within the system from August 1 within the provincial government."