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COURT TO HEAR CHALLENGE TO COCT’S MOVE TO DEMOLISH EMPOLWENI SHACKS

The Legal Resources Centre argues the City of Cape Town’s actions are unlawful as evictions are not allowed during the lockdown.

Picture: 123rf.com

CAPE TOWN – The City of Cape Town’s decision to demolish shacks during the national lockdown will be challenged in court on Thursday.

Last week, the city twice tore down shacks in the Empolweni community in Khayelitsha.

The city said that a court order restricted any occupation of the city-owned land and the law required it to act quickly when there was illegal occupation.

The Legal Resources Centre argues the City of Cape Town’s actions are unlawful as evictions are not allowed during the lockdown.

But Mayco member for Human Settlements Malusi Booi said that this was not an eviction because they were acting on a court order obtained in March last year.

“The main rule around the order says there must be no invasion on the site nor erection of any structure or extension.”

Community activist Nkosikhona Swartbooi said that officers took the building materials when they tore down the shacks, leaving the community unable to rebuild their homes.

“They have been sleeping outside this piece of land [Empolweni] as from Thursday last week when the first eviction took place during this lockdown period.”

Swartbooi disputes the city’s claim that the people that had been removed had settled on the land last week, arguing some families had been on the land since last year.

Source: EWN (emphasis by SD Law*)

* SD Law, aka Simon Dippenaar & Associates Inc., is a law firm of specialised eviction lawyers in Cape Town. Our Johannesburg eviction lawyers, and Durban eviction lawyers can also assist in the respective areas.

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