Sapoa recommends one law for all parties facing eviction.

Posted On Thursday, 14 November 2002 10:01 Published by eProp Commercial Property News
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Pretoria - The SA Property Owners' Association (Sapoa) has proposed a short- and long-term solution for the housing department to the recent appeal court decision that gave tenants who failed to pay rent and buyers who defaulted on their bond payments the same protection against eviction as illegal squatters. 

Sapoa CEO Neil GopalThe court decision, which has been criticised in many circles, was that the term 'unlawful occupier' as defined in the Prevention of Illegal Eviction >From and Unlawful Occupation of Land Act (PIE) included persons who once had lawful occupation of a property but whose occupation subsequently became unlawful.

Brian Kirchmann,
Sapoa's chief executive, said on Tuesday a delegation from Sapoa had met a delegation from the housing department regarding the appeal court ruling on the PIE.

The delegation had proposed, as a short-term solution, changing the regulations to exclude lawful tenants and landlords.

Kirchmann said the longer-term solution involved amending the act so there was a single act, similar to the Expropriation Act, which would simplify procedures and remedies and deal with all evictions.

He said housing minister Sankie Mthembi-Mahanyele was not present at the meeting but the Sapoa delegation's proposals were 'well received'.

The housing department delegation had indicated that Mthembi-Mahanyele was happy to deliberate about the issue and the delegation had agreed to give its proposals to the minister.

Kirchmann described the court decision as a 'sad joke'.

'It's not in the interest of anyone and totally ridiculous,' he said. 'You can't class an unlawful squatter as a lawful tenant.'

Andrew Bembridge of attorney firm Deneys Reitz said the appeal court in the case had interpreted PIE in a manner that turned common law on its head.

The housing owner no longer had an absolute right to evict the unlawful occupier, which had to be balanced against the land reform programmes in terms of the constitution.

Last modified on Tuesday, 10 June 2014 15:39

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