News / South Africa / Courts

Ilse de Lange
2 minute read
23 Jan 2019
6:20 am

Pretoria developer gets interdict against aggressive jobseekers

Ilse de Lange

The group allegedly threw stones at employees and threatened the contract manager in Hatfield that 'somebody was going to die'.

The North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria. Picture: Twitter

The developer of a high-density residential building in the heart of Pretoria’s student community in Hatfield has obtained an urgent interdict against aggressive jobseekers who allegedly threw bricks at contractors when their demands were not met.

Judge Selby Baqwa on Monday granted an interdict in the High Court in Pretoria to stop the group of jobseekers, led by Tsietsi Mokgope, from intimidating, threatening or assaulting employees and trespassing, causing damage or blocking access to the Hatfield property owned by Brookfield Investments 302.

The police were directed to ensure the safety of employees and contractors on the property.

Beyers Lategan, the project manager in charge of the R220-million development, said in court papers that Brookfield, which owns the property, had already invested about R40 million on the development and time was of the essence.

Brookfield appointed Boutel Projects as the main contractor and construction started on August 3 last year.

However, the contract manager informed Lategan a few weeks later that unknown persons had approached him for work. He said the meeting had been quite amicable, but matters soon turned sour when Mokgope asked for a second meeting.

When that did not happen, he returned to the site with about 20 people, aggressively demanding that construction be stopped.

Lategan said the group intimidated and threatened employees and contractors, demanded access and when the gate remained locked, started throwing bricks and attempted to break the lock.

They allegedly threw stones at employees and threatened the contract manager that “somebody was going to die”.

Lategan instructed the team to leave the property as it was clearly dangerous.

The security guards also feared for their lives.

Lategan said the police were asked to arrest the troublemakers but refused to get involved until a court authorised them to act.

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