MAUN ÔÇô Atleast 20 of the 22 squatter families at Maun’s Sedie ward have been evicted from their illegal structures by the Tawana Land Board (TLB) on Friday. Amongst those evicted were orphans, most of who claimed their parents had illegally occupied the land which they had stayed in since birth.
Tawana Land Board chairperson, Kutjavetira Mauano explained last week that the exercise was as per court order issued by the Land Tribunal in 2014. It is said that a total of 52 illegal settlers have appeared before the Land Tribunal and 40 of them were susceptible for eviction.
However, by Friday last week, a total of 22 of the illegal settlers have been served with court eviction letters while 18 were yet to be served. Land board authorities here indicated that squatting was rife in Maun with a total of 891 illegal settlers distributed across the tourism town.
The area MP Tawana Moremi had at a previous meeting advised squatters to follow the necessary steps of obtaining plots. He advised them that while they had individual reasons of illegal occupation of land, they should also bear in mind that failure to comply with laid down rules and regulations could land them into big trouble, something which the squatters might have overlooked. He advised TLB also that they should consider establishing a subordinate land board so that some issues pertaining to land related issues may be addressed there.
“Most of us here were deceived by land overseers who made us believe we were here legally. Some of us even paid for such allocations. They also assured us that all necessary paper work had been finalized with the land board, and we trusted them since they had full authority of issuing land as long as right procedures were followed”, said Marea Gabatsosiwe.
Gabatsosiwe told The Telegraph team at the site that they had just buried their mother two weekends ago. She said she has eight siblings, one with a newborn baby as well as four children of her own. By Monday afternoon they still did not know where they were destined to.