It remains to be seen whether disarray will again prevail on the streets of Rabie Ridge, particularly as calm has been restored.Gauteng human settlements MEC Lebogang Maile has condemned the land invasions in Midrand.
Community members went on rampage on Monday, 12 April 2021, burning tyres and rubble following protests which had been held overnight on Sunday.
“We are informed that the situation has calmed down…I can also confirm that the land does not belong to neither the municipality or the provincial government or any of the three spheres. So that is not our land,” Maile said in an interview with eNCA.
Maile did however say they are in discussions with the owners of the land, with the aim of partnering and relocating certain residents in Ivory Park.
Earlier, the actual owners of the property, a development group which owns property across the country, roped in armed security after they tried to erect shacks.
Police were later called, which culminated in a standoff with the Rabie Ridge community members. They used rubber bullets and stun grenades, in an attempt to disperse the protesters. The MEC has also welcomed the response by law enforcement agencies, especially SAPS and JMPD, in quelling the Rabie Ridge land invasions.
Maile says the Gauteng government will continue pushing back against the illegal occupation of land.
“Our anti-land invasions strategy we unveiled a few months ago is starting to bear fruits. We will continue to intensify our fights against land invasions,” he said.
Maile talks tough on Rabie Ridge land invasions
Lebogang Maile has further called on members of the Rabie Ridge community to do away with the illegal invasion of land. The MEC added that the provincial government has to put in place certain measures to deal decisively with illegal land invasions.
He said such efforts have forced government to redirect dire resources to respond to land invasions.
“We are faced with a serious challenge of housing backlog in the province, as a result of in-migration and province’s status of being a place of hope for job-seekers and economic opportunities”
Gauteng Human Settlements MEC Lebogang Maile