Malema volunteers to be Lenasia human shield

2012-11-23 13:12

Expelled ANC Youth League president Julius Malema has offered to defend Lenasia houses if the Gauteng local government and housing department resumes demolishing illegally built properties.

Malema was speaking shortly after South Gauteng High Court Deputy Judge President Phineas Mojapelo agreed to postpone the Human Rights Commission’s (HRC) case against the department indefinitely.

The department will halt the demolitions, making way for negotiations to find an amicable solution.

Mojapelo’s decision followed talks between the HRC and the department’s lawyers this morning.

Both parties agreed to ensure that there is no further illegal invasion of land in Lenasia.

Malema told jubilant Lenasia residents outside the court that South Africans were hungry for land.

“That’s your land, you must never apologise for it,” he said.

Malema said he was not present when the demolitions started earlier this month because he was writing exams at the University of South Africa, where he is studying political science.

But he promised residents that should the department resume demolitions he would defend the houses as a human shield.

Malema said residents, most of whom wore Pan Africanist Congress and National Freedom Party colours, should put aside their political differences when faced with a common challenge.

“To our disappointment, the ANC is nowhere to be found,” he said.

Activist Andile Mngxitama demanded that the ANC rebuild the 86 houses that have already been demolished.

Meanwhile, human rights organisation, the Legal Resources Centre (LRC), will join the court battle to stop the demolitions if it returns to court.

The South Gauteng High Court heard that the LRC, though not yet ready, was a potential intervening party.

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