Farmer Ivan Cloete is being evicted from his farm in Darling, allegedly to make way for a land reform claim, the SABC has reported.
Western Cape Agriculture MEC Ivan Meyer said despite productively working the land for more than a year, Cloete now faced being evicted from a third farm previously allocated to him by the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development (DALRRD).
Meyer alleged the eviction was being carried out “to make way for an MK veteran”.
“Cloete is effectively being denied the security of tenure on Colenso, despite having been moved from previous farms twice through no fault of his own, but rather due to DALRRD’s failure to implement and manage land reform projects under its responsibly,” Meyer said.
“Despite having in October 2019 inform[ed] the Office of the Public Protector, it reached an agreement to relocate Cloete to Colenso farm. DALRRD also indicated that it had entered into a long-term lease agreement with Cloete.”
Meyer argued that Cloete should not be evicted, in line with Disaster Management Act regulations, and said he had written to Rural Development and Land Reform Minister Thoko Didiza.
According to IOL, Cloete was removed from his previous two farms due to differences with his partners. He was reportedly moved to his current farm for his own safety. He will reportedly be offered an alternative farm.
A spokesperson for Didiza confirmed to News24 that an investigation was under way “and we are expecting a report by end of the matter.”
“The investigation will cover all the issues raised with regards to the first allocation to Mr Cloete until the last farm he is in.”