/ 23 November 2012

Juju visits Lens after court agreement ends demolitions

Julius Malema at the site of the Lenasia demolitions.
Julius Malema at the site of the Lenasia demolitions.

This was an agreement reached at the South Gauteng High Court, where the Gauteng housing department and the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) agreed to settle the matter outside of court.

Judge Phineas Mojapelo granted an indefinite postponement to allow parties to come to a "peaceful agreement" on what should be done with the houses built on land meant for government housing.He was assured that no demolitions would take place in the interim.

Neither the department nor the SAHRC mentioned when negotiations would take place. Mojapelo said a date would be set in court should no agreement be forthcoming.

The SAHRC approached the court for an interdict at the start of the month after the department began demolishing houses.

The plots were apparently fraudulently sold for amounts ranging from R2 500 to R95 000. The buyers were given forged deeds of sale bearing the department's logo.

'I love JuJu'
Expelled ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema addressed Lenasia residents outside the court, standing on a van with a loudspeaker.

Residents sang and danced as he arrived in Lenasia on Friday.

The crowd flocked around him as he walked to the site where houses had been demolished.

Women stood around shouting "I love JuJu" as Malema stopped to inspect the area.

He was joined by suspended youth league's spokesperson Floyd Shivambu and suspended secretary general Sindiso Magaqa.

Malema and his entourage climbed over the rubble of the demolished houses.

When he arrived at the front door of a woman's house she ran out and dropped to her knees at his feet crying.

Malema comforted the woman, telling her not to cry.

He said it was government's fault that houses had been demolished. At the same time, he absolved the ANC of any responsibility.

He told residents he would make sure the court order was enforced and asked for corrupt housing officials to be found and dealt with.

The crowd, which included National Freedom Party and ANC representatives, responded with "amen". – Sapa