On Thursday, 12 April, the Excelsior News was invited to visit the old SASSA offices, located on the corner of Joubert – and Kruger Street, as the process to clean it up had begun and a big improvement could already be seen.
On numerous occasions, the Excelsior News reported on the horrendous state in which the SASSA offices were. It was filled with trash as well as human waste and the smell was unbearable. Apart from the health concern, the SASSA offices itself seemed to be falling apart in places. The windows of the building were taken out of their frames by those who lived in the building before.
The stability of the second floor is also of great concern. A fire broke out inside the building, leaving a gaping hole in the wooden floor, and also showing that the beams put in place to keep the floor up are not in a good condition anymore. The Department of Public Works, Roads and Transport began working to clean the SASSA building up on Thursday, 5 April.
When the Excelsior News visited the site, eight loads of waste had already been taken away and there was still more cleaning to be done. Among other things, a water rinse still had to be performed to properly clean the building. The trees and grass around the building had also been cut, leaving open spaces that can once again be utilised.
The next step in the process is to determine whether the building can be repaired and all the safety hazards addressed, or if it should be demolished. Problem areas have already been spotted, but further investigation will determine whether these problems can be fixed or not.
The Excelsior News will remain in contact with those involved in the process to ensure that the community remains updated on the progress made. Many people hope that the building can be repaired to its former glory.