Fight for house in court

2017-06-21 14:16
ANC protesters outside Howick Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday.

ANC protesters outside Howick Magistrate’s Court on Wednesday. (Supplied)

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ANC members picketed outside the Howick Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday to support a family who had been interdicted from building a house on a farmer’s land.

The Ngubane family were served with an interdict by Hawkstone Farm owner Bruce Mackenzie that prevents them from any further construction of a brick house they had started building in May.

The family had been living in a mud house on the farm.

Speaking outside court, Mackenzie’s lawyer, Rob McCarthy, said his client had written three letters advising the Ngubane family to stop the construction of the house.

“They continued building and we were left with no choice but to get a court interdict. Their argument is that their mud house is falling apart hence they are building another house. We told them to replace the house that is falling apart and not just build another house without getting permission from the owner of the farm,” he said.

The court instructed the lawyers from both sides to find an amicable solution within 14 days.

McCarthy said his client was willing to meet with the Ngubane family to try and settle the matter.

Speaking outside court, family spokesperson Zwakele Ngubane said his family knew no other home other than the one at Hawkstone.

“I think I am the fourth or fifth generation from the family to be raised on the farm. My great, great, great-grandfather came here to look for work. Three generations of our family, including my 87-year-old grandfather, were born and raised here.

“The problem started when my mother, Ntombizonke Ngubane, retired from her job at the farm last year and she started building a brick house,” he said.

ANC regional secretary Mzi Zuma said the party was happy with the approach taken by the court and hoped that the two parties would be able to find a solution within the two weeks given by the court. He said the party was worried about living conditions on farms.

The KwaZulu-Natal Agricultural Union did not respond to queries at the time of going to print.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  farm workers

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