South Africa

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On 10 September, 2013, the High Court granted an eviction order “by agreement” of 184 unauthorized occupiers from a block of flats where they had been living for periods of up to 26 years. Only four of the 184 occupiers were present at the initial Court proceeding, accompanied by their unofficial ward committee representative, Mr. Skhulu Ngubane. The High Court both ordered the eviction of the occupiers, and, in parallel proceedings, refused to grant a rescission of this judgment. The case before the Constitutional Court was the rescission application.

The issue in this case was whether the Minister of Education and eight South African provinces had constitutional and statutory duties to provide daily NSNP meals to learners. The plaintiffs included Equal Education, a nonprofit legal education advocacy organization and the school governing bodies of both Vhulaudzi Secondary School and Mashao High School.

Statement: "South Africa: authorities must take immediate measures to protect social and economic rights before nationwide lockdown commences"
25 March 2020

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Developed by an ESCR-Net Member

South Africa: authorities must take immediate measures to protect social and economic rights before nationwide lockdown commences

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Coronavirus: A Call for Solidarity in a Time of Crisis

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Yolanda Daniels is a domestic worker and sole head-of-household who resided for 16 years in a farm dwelling.  She began living there when her former husband was employed by the owner.  She and her three children remained in the dwelling with the owner’s consent after the couple divorced. 

High Court in South Africa Affirms State Duty to Upgrade Informal Settlement

For over 20 years, the City of Johannesburg promised residents that it would upgrade Slovo Park in the face of a lack of electricity, adequate water, sanitation, refuse removal, demarcated roads, and a proneness to fatal shack fires.  The City’s inaction led residents to develop their own upgrading plans in keeping with the Upgrading of Informal Settlements Policy (UISP) contained within the National Housing Code.  Despite residents’ efforts to engage the City on implementing these plans, the City was unresponsive.  Consequently, represented by the

On 13 September 2019, S’bu Zikode, the president of Abahlali baseMjondolo and member of ESCR-Net’s Board, was invited to speak at Harvard University on the topic of urban activism.

Grounded in the experience of the...

South African Constitutional Court Protects Informal Land Rights Threatened by Mining Activities

The Lesetlheng community applicants brought this case before the Constitutional Court of South Africa on appeal from a High Court order evicting them from their farm. The Lesetlheng community is a subset of the larger Bakgatla-Ba-Kgafela community. The Lesetlheng communities’ ancestors purchased the farm in question in 1919, but owing to the racially discriminatory laws at the time, the ownership of the farm could not be transferred to the Lesetlheng community.