Bloem plot owners feel threatened following illegal occupation

Bloem plot owners feel threatened following illegal occupation

Plot owners say they feel threatened following the illegal occupation on their land. From Saturday some residents led by the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) in Bloemfontein erected shacks claiming that the land belongs to Mangaung Metro Municipality. Plot owners opened cases of trespassing and they say they feel their rights are being trampled upon.

Community members invaded privately owned property. They threatened the plot owners. For two days the homeowners could not sleep peacefully after threats that their houses will be burned. They say their rights have been violated as they were forced to provide proof of home ownership. A sigh of relief only came after they produced documents proving that they are owners.

“I want to know if we people who own plots, if our rights are not protected. I bought this plot with one million and then someone decides to come erect a shack, so I don’t have a right to say no. It’s painful,” says Mavis Moeti, plot owner.

“I am staying here in the plots, I bought a plot. Everyone here got a right in his own plot to do whatever he wants to do,” says Dave Motsotso another plot owner.

“It seems as if we black people don’t know what we want, we’re fighting against each other. We’re fighting against whites. We just have this mentality of fighting, imagine taking another black person out of the land and you’re saying you are fighting for black people to occupy land and suddenly a black person occupies land, and you fight again,” says Siyabonga Hlayisi, plot owner.

The invasion of the land was suspended after a short meeting between affected parties and the illegal occupants were given 24 hours to vacate the land. However, the EFF is adamant that documents provided will be verified.

“We’re still going to check those documents because he said he’s paying the bond. All of a sudden, he comes with the title deed. Where is the title deed all of the sudden coming from? We believe that, after paying the bond then he gets the title deed from the bank. Even when you pay your own car, you don’t have the papers,” says Gopolang Lipale, EFF Mangaung chairperson.

Plot owners say this is a political game. They claim that every time when it’s almost elections they find themselves at the receiving end and now they say their safety is a concern.

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