City of Cape Town's bid to have judge recused for 'bias' in District Six eviction case dismissed

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Makeshifts tents in District six which have now been taken down.
Makeshifts tents in District six which have now been taken down.
Gallo Images/Misha Jordaan
  • The City of Cape Town brought an urgent application in the Western Cape High Court to request the recusal of Judge Rosheni Allie. 
  • Allie is hearing an urgent application brought by Ndifuna Ukwazi, which is representing 46 homeless people in District Six. 
  • Allie dismissed the City's application with costs. 

The Western Cape High Court has dismissed an urgent court application brought by the City of Cape Town requesting that Judge Rosheni Allie be recused on grounds that she could be biased.

Allie dismissed the application with costs.

Allie was hearing the virtual case where lobby group Ndifuna Ukwazi challenged the eviction carried out against District Six residents two weeks ago.

The organisation was representing 46 homeless people whose structures were destroyed and personal belongings taken by City law enforcement officials.

The City's legal counsel, Roseline Nyman, told the court that Allie showed bias for not allowing the City to file its heads of argument and for allowing the case to proceed.

READ MORE | District Six evictions: Homeless say they lost everything during City of Cape Town operation

Nyman told the court that the City felt it had received a bias reception from the judge based on some comments she made over the homeless people being dispossessed of their belongings during the evictions.

Remnants from the massive operation where law enfo
Remnants from the massive operation where law enforcement officers moved in on District Six homeless people.

Allie, however, said it would be common cause that people were dispossessed of their belongings when evicted.

Ndifuna Ukwazi's lawyer, Ranjan Jaga, said the City's application was "premature".

"The recusal grounds are premature. The matter was set down to be heard for Wednesday. The parties had time to prepare. The judge was accommodating to have this matter heard on an urgent basis," Jaga said.

The City had been pushing for a postponement which Ndifuna Ukwazi had objected to.

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