AfriForum may seek to have Malema and EFF declared bankrupt
Civil rights organisation AfriForum says it may have to have Julius Malema and the EFF declared bankrupt in an attempt to recover legal costs that they owe the organisation.
The organisation said on Sunday that according to its estimates, it was still owed more than R400,000 by Malema and the EFF but that the sheriff of the court had only found assets to the value of R66,550 in the EFF’s head office in Johannesburg on November 9.
“Malema also declared in public that he had no money to pay AfriForum. Malema and the EFF’s assets are therefore insufficient to pay off their debt to AfriForum,” the organisation said.
AfriForum obtained a warrant in the Northern Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on November 1 to seize Malema and the EFF’s moving assets to pay off an amount of R337,758,68 that Malema in his personal capacity and the EFF as a party owed to AfriForum. This amount was the total of three cost orders that AfriForum had obtained against them since March 2017.
“Malema and the EFF paid R126,703.59 to AfriForum in the past week, which means that the outstanding amount owed to AfriForum was then R211,055.09. However, after the Northern Gauteng High Court on November 14 2018 granted another two cost orders against Malema and the EFF in AfriForum’s favour, Malema and the EFF’s outstanding debt to AfriForum is estimated to be more than R400,000, AfriForum said.
According to Kallie Kriel, CEO of AfriForum, the organisation will meet this week with its legal team to decide on a strategy to recover the amount from Malema and the EFF. Kriel said AfriForum remains resolute in its intention to recover the amount owed amount from Malema and the EFF – even it meant auctioning off the EFF’s assets and declaring Malema and the EFF bankrupt.
Kriel added that AfriForum would use the money recovered from Malema and the EFF to fight expropriation without compensation and landgrabs in court.
The money that Malema and the EFF owe to AfriForum stemmed from a case in which the Northern Gauteng High Court granted an interdict with costs in AfriForum’s favour on March 7 2017 prohibiting Malema and the EFF from encouraging people to occupy land illegally.
Malema and the EFF then brought an application to have the interdict set aside, which would have been heard on September 12 2017. However, the court had to postpone the case because of the late submission by Malema and the EFF of their heads of argument. The judge subsequently issued a punitive cost order against Malema and the EFF. Their legal representatives failed to attend the court hearing in February this year, and the case was settled in AfriForum’s favour when the annulment application was rejected with cost.
After Malema and the EFF disregarded the court order of March 7 2017 by allegedly continuing to encourage people to occupy land illegally, AfriForum brought a case of contempt of court against them, which was to have commenced on November 14 this year. However, Malema and the EFF’s legal team did not timeously submit their answering affidavit for opposing the case of contempt of court, which means that the case will have to be heard later, according to AfriForum.
“In this way, Malema and the EFF incurred yet another cost order. Malema and the EFF’s attempts to obtain an urgent court order on November 14 2018 to prevent AfriForum from removing the EFF’s property and selling it at auction also failed. Judge Louw ruled that there was no urgency to the matter and therefore issued another cost order against Malema and the EFF.”
According to Kriel, AfriForum’s legal team will now endeavour to bring the pending case of contempt of court to court as soon as possible.