Land standoff: Cops maintain strong presence in Khayelitsha

Informal settlers invaded land on Monday but the situation quickly turned violent when authorities intervened.

FILE: Law enforcement on Wednesday completely destroyed all the structures built by Khayelitsha residents who illegally invaded a piece of land in the township. Picture: Thomas Holder/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Law enforcement authorities continue to maintain a strong presence on a piece of privately-owned land vulnerable to illegal invasion.

Informal settlers invaded the land in Khayelitsha on Monday but the situation quickly turned violent when authorities evicted them on Wednesday. Police used rubber bullets and stun grenades to disperse angry squatters, some of whom stoned and set fire to vehicles.

Earlier this week, Denel, which owns the land, was granted an eviction order to remove hundreds of people who illegally erected shacks on its property near the Nolungile Railway Station.

WATCH: Violence escalates during Khayelitsha evictions

The police's Thembinkosi Kinana said there were still sporadic incidents of violence on Wednesday.

The City of Cape Town has since opened a criminal case against two senior Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) officials who led the land grab.

The EFF on Tuesday warned city officials that illegal land occupations would continue as it "formed part of the party's mandate."

The council condemned the land grabs and warned private land owners to be vigilant. It also encouraged people to report incidences of illegal land occupation to relevant authorities.

The EFF's Khuliswa Nondala said residents are studying the eviction notices issued by Denel.

"We are awaiting our lawyer because the EFF's lawyers are trying to appeal the court interdict we received yesterday."

WATCH: Mass land invasion in Khayelitsha