Recently a medical doctor phoned her husband as she had a flat tire on her way home from work. It was late evening when he arrived to fix the tire. Unexpectedly armed men appeared, and stole both cars. The middle aged couple was left naked in the bush. Some would say, thank God they were not raped or killed. This is our irony, where surviving crime is held as a victory.

Poverty and inequality rises where fear exists. Fear similar to love is a potent emotion that dictates conduct. Often fear is stronger than love and some do things out of fear that they rarely do for love.

Example, recently an associate advised that he stays close to home and rarely drives at night because of info at his disposal. Since social media is all over, some community associations have added a crime indicator to daily reports. So whenever anything happens in the suburb, members get notified. Ironically, this creates an added communal fear where non-existed.

To know or not to know is the question.

Similarly, an associate has a large house which is currently too big for his family. He bought looking forward of his kids growing up and needing the space. Intermediately, he let the space for income. Sadly, his father took ill and needed care and my friend asked the tenants to vacate the property within 3 months as per agreement. After 3 months the tenant refused to move and drama ensured.

He hired an attorney who took some time to ultimately compel the tenant to move. After paying tax and higher rates of municipal levies for electricity, water and sewerage my associate grasped that being a landlord was not as profitable as envisioned. The vindictive tenant broke tiling, door hinges and granite tops only to plead ignorance and poverty when brought to attention. To rid himself of the annoyance the owner was left with little option but repair at own expense.

Across Cape Town there are many who need housing who can pay. Oddly there are many homes, apartments etc. that continue empty because of an emotion – fear. Many homeowners and possible landlords are hesitant as tenants have too much rights. Ordinary property owners are regarded as likely tyrants and bullies and tenants are held as innocent and oppressed victims. This bitter drama plays out daily while justice lays by the wayside.

Those who pity tenants rarely consider the family who owns the property for rental. Perhaps this income pays the school or university fees or bank loan. Is this not an investor right. So when tenants ruin the property and refuses to leave, after months of legalities, the homeowner continually loses.

Why our president and entourage visit global capitals seeking investment often does not make sense when some amid his comrades overtly relish nationalization.

What is required for investment and job creation is simple. Establish safety and security for all and inspire local investment by protecting the existing local investor from suffering needless abuse.

When government can protect families from robbery and stripped naked more locals will travel and visit holiday locations in our country. By protecting the homeowner from spending time in court defending his/her property rights, more money will be invested into housing. This will reduce pressure on governments housing department. Locals have money but fear of security inhibits.

We are often our own enemies and waiting and seeking foreign investment sounds like a sad joke.

Cllr Yagyah Adams

Cape Muslim Congress