Municipality ordered to erect tents for families

THE Benoni magistrate's court has ordered the Ekurhuleni municipality to erect shelters to replace the ones it confiscated when 55 families were evicted from the side of a road in Cloverdene.

THE Benoni magistrate's court has ordered the Ekurhuleni municipality to erect shelters to replace the ones it confiscated when 55 families were evicted from the side of a road in Cloverdene.

At least 55 families were left in the open when their tents were dismantled by the Red Ants on Human Rights Day.

Children as young as one month old were left out in the open in the cold, rainy weather.

The residents obtained a court order after the eviction to have their tents returned but to no avail.

Yesterday they were jubilant when magistrate Knight ruled that the municipality must return their tents within 12 hours.

"What the municipality did was illegal. No one is allowed to disturb them or try to evict them again," Knight said.

"Such an act would be contempt of court and anyone doing that will face arrest."

The municipality had argued that was not evicting them but destroying a plastic structure they had erected.

The court found that the municipality's actions were meant to frustrate the group because the intention was to displace them.

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