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Court rules in favour of evicted Hillbrow residents

About 150 residents, who slept in the streets, returned home following their eviction from Wellington Court.

FILE: Residents, including unit owners, slept in the streets for over a week after being evicted. Picture: Vumani Mkhize/ EWN

JOHANNESBURG - At least 150 men, women and children have returned to their homes in Hillbrow after a High Court judge reversed their eviction from Wellington Court in the City Centre.

The residents, including unit owners, slept in the streets for over a week after being evicted from the building last Tuesday.

The Socio Economic Rights Institute (Seri) represented the evicted people and says they were evicted illegally after the City of Johannesburg sold the property to recover outstanding rates and taxes.

Seri says the residents were not given notice of the sale, no notice of the application for the eviction and of the date on which they were supposed to appear in court.

Judge Piet Meyer made a ruling in the High Court in Johannesburg yesterday that the residents have the right to remain in their homes while the matter is being challenged.

Seri's Nomzamo Zondo says, "This application involved, the eviction of over 150 people but only one copy was served to give notice to all of those people and the court felt that was insufficient."

About 500 Red Ants carried out the eviction at the building, which officials say is a drug den and a criminal hotspot.

Watch: Red Ants clear out Hillbrow 'drug-den'

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