Cape Town – An 85-year-old woman is reportedly set to be evicted from the only home she has known since she was a child, following a Constitutional Court ruling, reports said.
The Constitutional Court ruled for her eviction after discovering that the Somerset West home was given to her illegally, TimesLIVE reported.
Clara Phillips had occupied the home since 1947 when she was 11 years old, and she now lived there with her disabled son.
She alleged that the home was given to her by a Somerset West businessman.
However, the report said the house was reportedly bought by Willem Grobler at a public auction and the property was registered in his name in September 2008.
Grobler wanted his elderly parents to live in the property situated about 500m from his Somerset West home, the report said.
The report said that since buying the house, Grobler had met Phillips on three occasions and had offered to pay towards her relocation or, at his cost, provide alternative accommodation for her.
But Phillips refused, as she did not want to move from the property.
According to News24, Grobler asked Phillips to vacate the property by the end of January 2009, but she refused saying that she “enjoyed a right of life-long (occupancy) granted to her by a previous owner”.
Grobler later approached the Magistrate’s Court which granted an eviction application but this was overturned by the High Court which revealed that Grobler could not prove Phillips was an unlawful occupier according to the Prevention of Illegal Evictions and Unlawful Occupation of Land Act, 19 of 1998 (PIE).
The matter was escalated to the Supreme Court of Appeal before Grobler turned to the Constitutional Court which eventually ruled in his favour.
The court ordered that Grobler purchase a two-bedroom dwelling situated within a radius of 5km from where Phillips lived and arrange and pay for all the relocation costs of Phillips and her son, including the removal and transportation costs of their furniture, personal goods and effects on the dwelling.
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Compiled by Olwethu Mpeshe