AR and City in legal showdown

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Maria Amakali

Windhoek-The Affirmative Repositioning (AR) movement has dragged the City of Windhoek to court after City Police officials demolished shacks of several people who had illegally erected their homes at 7de Laan informal settlement on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Following an outcry from residents after the demolition of their shacks, AR filed a case in the High Court on Wednesday afternoon, saying the eviction of residents was illegal as there was no court order to that effect.

The court then granted an interim order that no further evictions and demolition of shacks should take place until the case had been heard and, furthermore, that the confiscated property of the evicted people be returned to them.

The City of Windhoek’s legal team was instructed to respond by today, as the matter has not yet been finalised. The City was also ordered to find alternative accommodation for the family of four who were without shelter after their shack was demolished.

Speaking to New Era, AR leader Job Amupanda said all municipalities across the country should do things in a legal manner. “We will not stop fighting for the rights of our people. We are prepared and we will not leave any stone unturned,” he said.

Asked if the court order will not incite more people to erect shacks, Amupanda said that if the City wants people to follow the law they too need to abide by the law.

City Police spokesperson Cillie Aula explained to New Era that they never needed a court order to evict residents who were found erecting shacks illegally on municipal land. “It should be clear that we did not demolish shacks where people were residing. We demolished those that were in the process of being erected,” Aula said.

Aula added that if members of the public are found erecting and occupying land illegally those structures would be taken down without any court order.

“Job should stop promoting lawlessness. We were supporting him when he was advocating for the public to get land the legal way, but now it is not legal,” Aula said.

She said people should stop using the land issue to advance their own political agenda.
The case will be back in court today.

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