Land issues up in court

JOHANNESBURG The recent application in court to ask that the SADC Tribunals decision in Mike Campbells case be enforced was dismissed by Justice Patel.

The application had been brought by Gramara (Pvt) Ltd, one of the 79 successful applicants in the Campbell case. In that case the Tribunal decided that section 16B of the Constitution and the governments land reform programme were in breach of the SADC Treaty, and ordered that applicants already evicted from their farms must be properly compensated and that the government must protect applicants still on the land and ensure they were not evicted.

Justice Patel rejected the governments argument that the Tribunal was not validly constituted and decided that the Campbell case was within the Tribunals jurisdiction and that its judgment was binding on Zimbabwe at the international law level.

However, he ruled that the Tribunals judgment could not be enforced in Zimbabwe because to do so would be to impugn the legality of the land reform programme as implemented by section 16B of the Constitution and sanctioned by a 2007 decision of the Supreme Court and therefore would be contrary to Zimbabwes public policy.

Three of the South African farmers dispossessed of their farms in Zimbabwe under the land reform programme have lodged an application in the North Gauteng High Court for the registration of the SADC Tribunals Campbell judgment. Their objective is enforcement of the Tribunals judgment in South Africa, for instance, by attaching Zimbabwe government assets in South Africa.

Post published in: Politics

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *