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CT property owners seek compensation after land illegally occupied

The land was illegally occupied in Philippi East and property owners want a court to compel government to buy them out of the land.

FILE: A informal settlers works on his dwelling in Philippi. Picture: Twitter

CAPE TOWN - A group of property owners whose land was illegally occupied in Philippi East want a court to compel government to buy them out of the land.

They had initially approached the Western Cape High Court to evict the residents from what’s known as the Marikana informal settlement.

They've turned to the court to seek relief for compensation for their land.

Lawyers representing the group of property owners have argued in court that there's legal precedent where a court ordered the government to purchase occupied private property.

They've told the court that in that case, that national government bought the land and transferred it to the provincial government.

The City of Cape Town, who is the second respondent in the matter, has indicated it does not have the money to buy the properties.

It's understood that the municipality asked the Western Cape government to make funds available for a possible purchase in November.

An application for funds was apparently submitted last month but it's unclear whether it will be approved.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)