Application on land occupation in court in November

AfriForum’s application to act as friend of the court in the court application brought in the Western Cape High Court by the Human Rights Commission (HRC), the EFF and other applicants to have certain common-law remedies against land occupiers declared invalid, will be heard on 24 to 27 November. AfriForum will argue against the application. The original application will be heard on the same day.

The EFF and HRC’s application is brought against the Cape Town Metro, the Minister of Human Settlements, Water and Sanitation, the Minister of Cooperative Government and Traditional Affairs, and the National Police Commissioner. The first part of the application was heard on 25 Augustus 2020.

The second part of the application (to which AfriForum’s application to be added as friend of the court applies) aims to have the common-law remedies of contra-spolie declared invalid and unconstitutional in as far as it provides for the demolition of occupied as well as unoccupied homes.

AfriForum will argue in court that the stipulations of the Prevention of Illegal Eviction and Unlawful Occupation of Land Act 19 of 1998 (PIE) only come into effect when land is illegally occupied, and the occupiers live permanently on the land. The normal common-law remedies should therefore still apply in cases where illegal structures are in the process of being built or where these structures have not yet been occupied.

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