EFF’s desperate attempt to overturn land invasion verdict dismissed by third and final court, with costs

The Supreme Court of Appeal today dismissed a third and final application for leave to appeal by Julius Malema and the EFF against an interdict which AfriForum acquired in 2017. The interdict prohibited Malema and the EFF from inciting people to trespass on private property and to illegally occupy it.

In January 2023, Malema and the EFF applied for leave to appeal in this case with the High Court in Pretoria – the application was dismissed. They then took the matter to the Constitutional Court, who dismissed their application in March 2023. Even after the highest court in South Africa – the Constitutional Court – dismissed their application for leave to appeal, they approached the Supreme Court of Appeal. Today’s definitive verdict by the Supreme Court of Appeal leaves Malema and the EFF with no further options for appeal.

This is the fifth loss for Malema and the EFF in this same matter. First the interdict was granted by default because Malema’s attorneys did not show up at court in 2017. Second Malema’s rescission application was dismissed with costs. Third Judge Mabusa of the High Court dismissed Malema’s application for leave to appeal. Fourth the Constitutional Court dismissed his application for direct access and appeal and now the Supreme Court of Appeal likewise dismissed the appeal because there are no prospects of success. It is now established law that incitement to trespass and invade land is a serious crime.

“Even though this fight against the incitement of criminality by thugs is now conclusively over, the question still needs to be asked: Why were Malema and the EFF so intensely desperate to be allowed to incite land invasions?” says Ernst van Zyl, Campaign Officer for Strategy and Content at AfriForum.

“This third and final defeat for Malema and the EFF in this important battle is a major win for the right to private property and a devastating loss for those who wish to incite criminality and lawlessness,” Van Zyl concludes.

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