Johannesburg - The Constitutional Court will on Thursday hear argument on whether South African courts can enforce rulings made by the SADC tribunal against Zimbabwe.

The appeal came about after the Southern African Development Community Tribunal ruled in favour of Zimbabwean farmers who challenged that country's land reform policy in 2007.

Zimbabwe's government was ordered to protect the farmers' ownership of their land and to pay compensation for farms which had already been confiscated.

Zimbabwean officials ignored two of the tribunal's orders. The farmers then approached the High Court in Pretoria to have the orders enforced in South Africa.

The High Court ordered that certain properties owned by the Zimbabwean government in Cape Town be seized.

Zimbabwe approached the High Court in Pretoria to have the ruling revoked. The application was denied.

Zimbabwe then asked the Supreme Court of Appeal to dismiss the judgement. This application was also dismissed.

The country's officials then approached the Constitutional Court to argue that, amongst other things, protocol does not allow for a judgement obtained against Zimbabwe to be enforced in South Africa. - Sapa