Pretoria land invasion case delayed
Pretoria - An urgent application by the government to evict people who illegally invaded land in Wallmansthal, north of Pretoria, was postponed in the North Gauteng High Court on Tuesday.
The application was delayed until Thursday after two separate groups arrived at the court, both claiming to represent the Wallmansthal Communal Property Association (WCPA).
The land in Wallmansthal is in the process of being transferred by the rural development and land reform department to successful land claimants.
Despite an earlier court order that no one was allowed to settle on the land until infrastructure had been installed, large numbers of people started moving onto the land after it had apparently been sold unlawfully at R400 a piece to members of the public.
Civil rights group AfriForum last week helped the WCPA to obtain a court order freezing two bank accounts into which money was paid for the land.
AfriForum said it supported the legitimate land owners to whom property had already been transferred.
When the case came before the court on Tuesday, another group claiming to be the real WCPA tried to oppose the department's eviction application.
The group's advocate, Francois Kriel, asked the court to postpone the matter so the respective groups could meet and "try to find out what was going on".
The one group was opposed to a blanket eviction order, claiming it had a right to be on the land, while the other supported the eviction bid.
Judge Joseph Raulinga said it was clear invasions where mushrooming and that something had to be done about it urgently. He nevertheless postponed the application until Thursday to allow the two groups to talk to each other.