“We are just waiting for the dark and these security guards will know,” – Resident
Hundreds of residents of a hijacked building in downtown Johannesburg were evicted on Wednesday.
Men, women and children from Fattis Mansions were forced to sit outside on the streets with all their belongings as the sheriff of the South Gauteng High Court executed an order, assisted by the Red Ants, to evict them.
The building - dubbed “Mnyamandowo” - has no electricity or water, and no ablution facilities. Security guards have been posted to bar the entrance of the building.
“We are just waiting for the dark and these security guards will know,” a woman who was evicted said.
In their bid to return to the building, the residents launched an urgent court interdict at 6pm against the evictions.
Two weeks ago, seven people died when a similar building, Cape York, caught fire. The eviction notice served to residents, dated 25 April 2017, stated that the building was “destroyed” (an apparent reference to its dilapidated state) and that it would need to be rebuilt.
All those residing within Fattis Mansions were ordered to vacate within 45 days of the court order being served by the time of going
to print the Residents were still in court appealing the eviction and the City of Johannesburg had been ordered by High Court Judge Van Der Linder to provide residents with alternative accommodation, the City Indicated it had set up temporary shelter tents in Karzene East of Johannesburg through their Disaster management team.
The evicted resident are represented in court by SERI (Social Economic rights institute) SERI is a South African human rights organisation which provides professional assistance to individuals, communities and social movements seeking to protect and advance their socio-economic rights.
These are the rights to housing, water, healthcare services, fair labour practices, electricity, sanitation, a clean and healthy environment, education and various children’s rights, which are grounded in South Africa’s Constitution.