Court lets Yeoville families, evicted by church, go home
Twenty-seven adults and six children who have been living on the street outside the building in Yeoville‚ Johannesburg‚ from which they were unlawfully evicted almost two weeks ago have been given the right by the high court to return home.
The Legal Resources Centre (LRC)‚ which represented the families‚ said the Johannesburg High Court had granted an order on Monday allowing the residents the right to return to their homes.
According to the LRC‚ The Revelation Church of God Investment Company‚ which owns the building‚ unlawfully evicted the residents on November 16. The residents had been living in the building since 2000 and 2001 following the payment of a once-off fee to a person who presented themself as being in charge of the property.
“On the 13 November 2016‚ they were presented with an eviction notice; however‚ the notice contained a different address and was not signed. On the 16 November at 4am in the morning‚ men dressed in plain clothes entered the building and proceeded to order all of the residents to leave. The eviction resulted in injuries to some of the residents‚” the LRC said.
It added that the residents had asked for a copy of the eviction order to be shown to them‚ which was denied. After they phoned the Yeoville Police Station for assistance‚ two police officers arrived. They requested to see the eviction order‚ were taken aside and allegedly shown one. However‚ despite repeated requests by the residents and their legal counsel to see the eviction order‚ it was not produced.
“The Legal Resources Centre also attempted to access the court order giving rise to the eviction‚ but the order is not stamped or signed. The LRC then contacted the attorneys on brief. The original attorneys did not have knowledge of an application for eviction and did not have evidence of a court order.
“The eviction was therefore unlawful‚” the LRC said.