Desiree de Lange, Diep River, on behalf of the Steurhof Community
Forty years ago, from March 1974 till March 1975, 139 World War II soldiers and their families from Steurhof were evicted under the Group Areas Act and send to Lavender Hill.
Twenty years ago the Steurhof Restitution Claimants Committee, with Desiree de Lange (chairperson) Una Sirmonpong (vice chair), Audrey Abrahams (secretary), Helen Fortuin (assistant secretary), Elizabeth Phillips (committee member) plus three members who passed in in 2 000, strived hard to reclaim their late parents’ title deeds from the South Peninsula Municipality, which they should have received in 1974.
After 16 years without any success in this regard, the committee managed to receive an appointment with mayor Patricia de Lille on October 15 2012. After listening to our plight the mayor held a deed of sale ceremony on December 19 2012.
The process once again stood still and nobody received another letter of what was taking place. Ms De Lille sent her representative, Elgin Fortune, to a meeting with the claimants committee and from then on the process went ahead with the help of Mr Fortune, Wilfred Johannes, the new Retreat housing officer Grant Basson, the area manager, Ms Goliath and Mr Maloi, after a lot of pressure from the Steurhof claimants committee.
On June 2 this year the community received their late fathers’ title deeds as valid direct descendants. All glory to God for His guidance and through prayer we succeeded.
The community extend their heartfelt thanks to the claimants committee for their hard work and perseverance. Also thanks to South Peninsula High School principal, Brian Isaacs, staff and school governing body who assisted the claimants.