House of woes

An unfinished Kenwyn house has been driving residents up the wall.

They say vagrants have moved into the Range Road house and prostitutes are servicing their clients there.

A nearby resident, who didn’t want to be named, said the house at times resembled a “shebeen” and a “brothel”.

“Drinking, fighting, swearing and all sorts of other things happen here,” the resident said.

She said her son had been mugged in the area recently.

“How many more cases are there where people have been robbed and the criminals chose this house to hide away?”

A former police captain, Keith Blake, has been speaking about the problems at the house on behalf of his neighbours, many of whom, he said were living in fear and were too afraid to speak up.

They were angry, he said, that they paid high rates and taxes and yet City officials had failed to take action.

“Must there first be a rape or a murder before the authorities take action and why are these residents’ calls for help not being addressed?”

Nobody was at the house when the Tatler visited last week but there were clear signs of habitation.

Ward councillor Mark Kleinschmidt, said the owner had been asked to complete the building “as soon as possible”.

“The concerns included vagrants sleeping in the building, whom I personally removed with the assistance of our neighbourhood bicycle patrol,” he said.

“I believe that residents have a legitimate concern because any vacant building adjacent to yours poses a threat.

Both the Kenwyn Neighbourhood Watch and the City’s problem buildings unit had tackled the owner about the house, he said.

The house has a wall and a gate has since been installed, but

it seems people can still enter the property from the railway line at the back.

Mr Kleinschmidt said he logged a complaint about that with Metrorail. The owner is believed to be an elderly woman living in Johannesburg.

“As an elderly person living outside Cape Town, she has experienced difficulty in complying to our requests to complete the building of the house,” Mr Kleinschmidt said.

The Tatler was unable to contact the owner, despite several attempts, by the time this edition went to print.

BLOB To report any issues at the house, residents can call law enforcement’s Wayne Aldridge at 073 150 3179 or 021 444 8221. To log a service request with the City call NUMBER and get a reference number so each case can be followed up.