Residents of the Patsing informal settlement near Lenasia, south of Johannesburg, flatly refuse to leave the land, which they have illegally occupied.
They gathered outside the settlement on Monday to protest.
They sang struggle songs and danced at the venue where Geoff Makhubo, mayor of Johannesburg, launched a new anti-land grab program.
Good day Joburgers, we are in a Lenasia today with MECs @LebogangMaile1, @TasneemMotara & @FaithMazibukoSA for the launch of the Anti-Land Invasion Campaign in the City of Johannesburg #WeServeJoburg #NoToLandInvasion pic.twitter.com/JLPMiyDXOp— Geoff Makhubo (@GeoffMakhubo) August 17, 2020
The program involves the deployment of some 1,500 community patrollers who will work with law enforcement to report illegal land occupations.
The initiative was introduced at the Patsing informal settlement because it is one of the hotspots in the province where people occupy land that partly belongs to the government.
Members of the police watched the group of rioters in armored vehicles. The residents later adjourned after community leaders addressed them about their frustrations.
Residents said on Monday that their squatter huts had been demolished by the government on two occasions – in January and then again in April – and that they would damage apartments in the area if the government dared to evict them from the piece of land again.