Three women and their minor children were left homeless after their house was recently demolished and their personal belongings destroyed by persons allegedly acting on behalf of South African Social Security Agency (Sassa).
Sisters Nelly, Annikie and Elizabeth Monyela allege in sworn affidavits that, while living peacefully in a house on the farm Syferkuil 912LS with their minor children, their whole lives changed drastically when on 20 March a bulldozer appeared on their doorstep and started to demolish their home and personal belongings.
The sisters claim they had not received any prior notice of the intended demolition and are now homeless. “Fortunately a relative agreed to accommodate us temporarily,” they stated.
Nelly in her affidavit stated that she had approached the bulldozer operator who allegdly said that he was acting on behalf of Sassa who had been instructed by the Bakgaga Ba Mothapo Traditional Council. According to Nelly, the Police was also called to the scene but refused to come to their assistance, claiming that it was a civil matter.
The Monyelas instructed local attorney Franco Marx to act on their behalf and seek relief from the court. Marx filed a notice of motion in the Limpopo High Court on 7 April, requesting the court to order Sassa in its official capacity, the Bakgaga Ba Mothapo Traditional Council, the Minister of Social Development, the Chief Executive Officer of Sassa as well as three persons allegedly involved in the act of demolition to restore the Monyelas in the position they were in before the eviction. If unopposed, the matter will be on the court’s roll for 20 June.
Marx also requested the court to declare that the matter was indeed a criminal one and that the Police should therefore investigate the case.
Marx explained to Polokwane Observer that in terms of Section 8 of the Prevention of Illegal Occupation and Eviction Act (Act no 19 of 1998), no person may evict an unlawful occupier except on the authority of a competent court and that a private prosecution could be instated if the authorities fail to prosecute.
Story: BARRY VILJOEN