‘Aggressive’ land grabbers interdicted by court
LENASIA residents threatened by land grabbers were granted relief after the court interdicted invaders from entering their premises unlawfully or without permission.
FR Auto Panelbeaters, Lenville Village, Mahmood Wadee and Shabaan Chirambo, represented by advocate Yakoob Alli, had made an urgent application in the Gauteng High Court against the land invaders last Wednesday.
According to the founding affidavit, Goolam Ameer, of FR Auto Panelbeaters, alleged that the respondents were a group of unidentifiable land invaders.
“From my observation and interaction with them, they are not individually identifiable because they do not disclose their identity and often present themselves collectively as a mob, threatening violence and bloodshed.
“Their stated aim and objective is to identify and seize vacant and undeveloped land in Lenasia on the apparent basis that it is unfair for them not to own the land.
“The collective perspective of the group is to seize any land irrespective of whether it is privately owned or not,” he alleged.
He became aware that the respondents were in the process of land grabbing on October 19.
“There was concern among land owners in Lenasia.
“As such, I immediately, on the same morning, instructed the fourth applicant (Shabaan Chirambo) to commence with the building and construction of a boundary wall surrounding the Jewel Street property to preclude the respondents from having easy access to the land. The fourth applicant began excavation works for trenching the foundation.”
He said Chirambo had called later that day, stating that a group of people had asked him to stop with the excavation and asked to speak to him (Ameer).
An angry group of about 15 people awaited his arrival and told him no one was permitted to build on the Jewel Street Property.
“I advised them that the first applicant was the lawful owner and (was) entitled to put up a boundary wall.”
Ameer said the setting was “highly emotional” and the group was angry and aggressive.
He said he noticed one of the men had a gun.
One of the women in the group said the land belonged to the people and they wanted to build houses on it.
“She shouted at me in an effort to intimidate me with violence.”
He alleged that on October 22, he was again called to the same property where a larger group of alleged land grabbers had pitched up.
They allegedly assaulted staff and took their excavation tools.
“They had threatened to set alight the fourth applicant’s motor vehicle. They set alight a tyre next to his motor vehicle with the intention to burn his car at which point the police arrived.”
Ameer said he heard there was a land invasion on the same day at The Reeds on Dimple Road.
Judge Majake Mabesele ordered that the land grabbers be interdicted from entering or trespassing on Lenasia Extension 13, which includes Jewel Street, Dimple Road and The Reeds.
They were also interdicted from threatening, intimidating and assaulting the applicants and their employees; and from unlawfully occupying or trespassing on any privately owned land in Lenasia.
If they are caught constructing any temporary or permanent resident dwellings in the area, the deputy sheriff and police are authorised to remove the structure while in the process of being erected.