Etete residents vindicated

2018-11-07 06:00
PHOTO: jyothi laldasResidents protest outside KwaDukuza Magistrate Court as 17 members arrested for trespassing appear before the judge.

PHOTO: jyothi laldasResidents protest outside KwaDukuza Magistrate Court as 17 members arrested for trespassing appear before the judge.

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ETETE residents from the Magwaza Polaland estate protested outside of the KwaDukuza Magistrate’s Court on Friday, October 26 to support 17 of their members who had been arrested for trespassing.

The residents were demanding the withdrawal of the charges and for their members to be set free.

During their appearance on Friday, the magistrate dropped all the charges with no conditions and their bail money was refunded.

The matter started in July when residents who were said to have occupied privately owned land were forcibly removed when the land owner secured a court interdict. When the group went to report the matter at the uMhlali SAPS, they were arrested for trespassing.

Speaking outside of court, community leader Khulekani Mkhize said they feel vindicated as their arrests were unlawful.

“It is clear that the state had no case against us. This amounts to negligence on their side and we have decided to take action against the state as we want to exercise our options of suing for wrongful arrest,” he said.

Mkhize further said that the situation has had a negative effect on their lives as community members have been left stranded with no homes for the past four months. However, they have promised they will continue fighting for what is rightfully theirs.

The members also indicated their intention of going back to the land they were removed from, saying that law enforcement must not be “biased”, as they say has been the case in this matter previously.

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