The sheriff of the court and the SAPS started at the end of last week to remove illegal and unwanted structures from Mr. Fernando Goncalves’s land outside Rustenburg. This follows AfriForum’s urgent high court application in Mahikeng to obtain a court order to immediately halt the landgrabs on this property and prevent more landgrabs. The court order also compelled the SAPS to act against the occupiers together with the sheriff.
Goncalves’s land was illegally occupied in June 2019, after which the trespassers started immediately to mark out stands and erect structures. Although Goncalves and AfriForum’s local branch manager had tried to open a case of trespassing at the Rustenburg police station, the police refused to open a case or take decisive action to halt the land grab.
AfriForum’s instructed its legal team to prepare the necessary application and approach the court urgently. The application was emailed at least three times to the Rustenburg police station, but these were deleted unopened.
“With this application and the execution thereof AfriForum once again stands its ground against the land grab problem that currently faces the country. It is hopeful to see how communities where landgrabs occur are willing to take hands with AfriForum and react quickly to stop illegal occupations,” says Marnus Kamfer, AfriForum’s Legal and Risk Manager.
“Certain police stations unfortunately still fail to protect communities against these types of crimes. AfriForum will continue to act as watchdog, however, and ensure that the SAPS is taken to book if it does not fulfil its mandate,” says Joseph Renaud, AfriForum’s Head of Safety for the central region.