Butha-Buthe — An estimated 20 lowly paid civil servants who illegally occupied Government Residential houses in Butha-Buthe owe over three-years in rentals.
Motsamai Mokoto District Administrator said residents who occupied the houses had not followed proper procedures.
“During our investigations we found that the housing allocation was not done properly.
“Procedures were not followed when allocations were done.
“Civil servants who qualify to occupy the houses are those who are in grade F and above but the current occupants fall below grade F,” Mokoto said.
He said they have a list of the illegal occupants and the rentals they owed the government, which would soon be deducted from their salaries.
The rental rates ranges from M19 per month for a single room and about M331 per month for a three-bedroomed house.
He said a civil servant who needs a house has to apply before an approval committee evaluates and approve or disapprove.
“If an application is approved, rent would subsequently be deducted on a monthly basis, but in this case the rent was never deducted because they had not followed the procedure.”
Makoto confirmed a notice to vacate the houses was issued on August 30.
“Some of the illegal occupants have not yet vacated the properties.
“They indicated they needed more time to find new accommodation.”
Mokoto said they have already approved applications for civil servants who applied for houses and met the requirements.
“We have allocated the houses to those who qualify and they will move in as soon as the illegal occupants leave,” he said.
He said affected tenants will face disciplinary action for breaching some sections of the policy.
Mokoto said although he was entitled to a government house, he was not enjoying his benefit as another government employee, not permitted, was staying in the house.
“I am currently staying outside the district because a house that was allocated to me is occupied by someone else,” he said.
Mokoto said some occupants were not working for the government.
“There were two such cases we have dealt with. We have since ordered them out.”