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Sunday, March 23, 2014

Building complaint

Sir / Madam

I've been attempting to lodge a complaint about illegal building activities by our next door neighbour in the suburb of Ekklesia, Pretoria. I can assure you that I have spent hours searching for the contact details of a municipal department that deals with this specific type of complaint but I am afraid I have come to the conclusion that the City of Tshwane does not divulge this kind of information to normal South African citizens.

In April 2013 I was contacted by the owner of the aforementioned property to obtain our permission to create a "small hole" in the existing prefab boundary wall between our properties in order to make the erection of a new brick wall easier. I asked her for how long we'd be inconvenienced. She said it would take "some weeks". She would leave no contact details.

To our surprise, early the next day (21 April 2013) the builders removed a major section of the wall, leaving our property completely exposed to the view of the tenants in the house. In the process they also destroyed a herb garden upon which we had lavished much care and love.

Even worse, it soon dawned on us that it was not a simple new boundary wall being constructed when the builders dug out extensive foundations. After weeks of intermittent building we discovered an enormous elevated garage taking on form right on the partition between the properties.

The agonising building works abruptly stopped in August 2013. We've been living with the unsightly half-built structure in our front garden since then. Besides being unsightly, the incomplete building is terribly unsafe especially since new tenants with extremely inquisitive, energetic children have taken residence there. They are always left to play without any adult supervision. Heavy prefab concrete wall slabs remain stacked against an unfinished wall. An unsecured, hastily placed carport roof precariously rests atop the roofless structure.

Our privacy has been compromised because a window in the garage wall is nothing but an unfinished hole through which the rowdy children endlessly throw rocks onto our carport roof and onto our vehicles. The spiteful youngsters incite our pets with sticks and stones; we cannot even use our own bathroom without the risk of being spied upon by them. In contrast, their sheltered, elevated position within the unfinished building provides them with the perfect private vantage point.

I would apreciate any assistance.

Sent from my Sony Xperia Z Ultra smartphone