Unauthorised Land Occupation

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In 2016 Afesis-corplan conducted Research on Managing and Curbing Unauthorised Land Occupation for the Housing Development Agency. See below for copies of this research.

The report argues that unauthorised land occupation will continue in South Africa, and will be difficult to stop, unless Government adopts a three prong approach to managing and curbing unauthorised land occupation, that includes:

  • 1. Pre-emptive land development strategy: In response to unauthorised land occupation that could happen in future, Municipalities must: (1) implement land acquisition and development programmes; (2) develop and implement improved land and housing subsidy allocation procedures; (3) establish incremental settlement areas within the spatial planning and land use management system; and (4) implement Managed Land Settlement programmes.
  • 2. Upgrading strategy: In response to unauthorised land occupation that has happened in the past, Municipalities must continue to upgrade informal settlements
  • 3. Rights-based relocation strategy: In response to unauthorised land occupation that is happening in the present (and the past in certain instances), land owners and the municipality must follow lawful procedures when dealing with unauthorised land occupation.


Additional information

For an example of an Upgrading of Informal Settlement approach see Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality Upgrading of Informal Settlement Strategy

For more information on how to undertake lawful evictions see Revisiting Evictions in South Africa: a Legal and Practical Guide developed by the Socio-Economic Rights Institute of South Africa.

See this link for more information on Managed Land Settlement.