SERI represents 29 market traders trading near the Mogwase Shopping Complex in Mogwase in the North West threatened with eviction from the space in which they conduct their business and use to earn a living.
Transnet approached the High Court in Mafikeng seeking an order to evict the market traders alleging that they are trading on land currently owned by the Republic of South Africa which will soon be transferred and registered to Transnet. Transnet alleges that the traders are trading on their property, close to a railway line, which poses a safety risk for the traders. Transnet further states that they have engaged with the municipality in order to resolve the situation but the municipality has not been responsive.
On 4 April 2019, SERI, on behalf of the market traders, filed heads of arguments with the Mahikeng High Court arguing that:
1) Transnet does not own the land on which the market traders are operating;
2) The traders’ activities are not illegal and are recognised and protected in terms of the Businesses Act 71 of 1991;
3) The traders do not operate on or near a railway line but between the shopping complex and housing estate and are not enticing people to cross railway lines to access their stalls; and,
4) The traders have been trading on the land for almost 20 years, not four.
The case will be heard in 2019.
Read more about the case here.