IPS News: “Now We Demand They Do It For the Poor”

11 08 2010


‘Now We Demand They Do It For the Poor’
By Davison Mudzingwa

CAPE TOWN, Aug 10, 2010 (IPS) – Weak floodlights barely held back gathering darkness as Somalia met Serbia in the finals of the Poor People’s World Cup. A small band of supporters were on hand to see and African side lift the cup in Cape Town’s Vygieskraal Stadium.

The Poor People’s World Cup drew 38 teams, predominantly from poor black and coloured communities far from the city’s glittering Green Point Stadium.

Two Worlds, Two Cups

Planners initially proposed Athlone, on the Cape Flats, as the site for Cape Town’s official World Cup venue, reasoning that the investment in infrastructure could breathe fresh life into this working class neighbourhood. The rows of council housing were too prosaic a backdrop for FIFA’s vision, and a picture-perfect location between mountain and sea was chosen instead.

It was left to the Poor People’s World Cup to host a tournament there, on the patchy grass of Avondale Athletics’ home ground. The teams, each adopting the name of a different country, played for a trophy and 5,000 rand (a bit less than $700) in prize money.

The tournament was originally planned to run concurrently with FIFA’s, to highlight the contrast between the daily lives of the majority of South Africans and the opulence of the World Cup proper. It began in June, but, fittingly, a struggle to find sponsors meant the finals were delayed by a full month, to Aug. 9.

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Photographs of Blikkiesdorp

4 04 2010
by Gareth Kingdon

Gareth spent some time living in a tin can in Blikkiesdorp.  He knows the struggles of its residents first-hand.  For more photos of Blikkiesdorp by Gareth Kingdon, click here

Reportback from Chicago Anti-Eviction Town Hall

3 02 2010

Cabrini Green Town Hall

Over 150 people packed into the Park Community Church near Cabrini Green on Thursday night for a Town Hall Against Displacement and Evictions. While most of those in attendance were residents of Cabrini Green, many supporters from around the city were also in attendance to show solidarity. Dozens of people got up to share their own experiences with evictions, mistreatment by management, displacement, police harassment and many other issues. As sad and infuriating as many stories were, a common thread of inspiration ran through the evening as every speaker pledged to fight back and join together. As one woman who was evicted from Cabrini Green and now lives in a nursing home said, “I don’t care how, I’m going home. Steel doors can’t hold me back from my community.”

The town halls are going to continue as weekly or bi-weekly events to build momentum and organization for the Anti-Eviction Campaign in partnership with the Cabrini Green LAC. The crowd pledged to support an action next Thursday by Anti-Eviction Campaign member group Southside Together Organizing for Power, who is protesting at the City Plan Commission meeting against slumlord Leon Finney, Jr.’s disrespect, neglect and intimidation of tenants of the Kimbark Tenants Association in Woodlawn. The action will start at 12:30pm on the second floor of City Hall (121 N. LaSalle) Thursday January 21st.

While the momentum is strong, at the end of the day Lenise is still homeless and 50 other families at Cabrini Green may soon join her if the powers that be have their way. It is up to all of us not to let them. Get involved in the Anti-Eviction campaign by emailing antieviction@gmail.com.

Photos of Mandela Park midnight protest (11 Nov 2009)

12 11 2009

Some photos of yesterday’s protest in Mandela Park.  Police banned the protest during the day.  Protesters reassembled at about 8pm and toyi-toyi’ed until 11pm














Photos of Symphony Way protesting the pending eviction

20 10 2009

For more photos, click here

IOL photos of Symphony Way protesting after the court order

IOL photos of Symphony Way protesting after the court order

AbM-WC march on the Mayor’s office

20 07 2009

Click here for additional photos of the march on the IOL website

(higher resolution photos available by contacting abmwesterncape@abahlali.org)

Photos of Symphony Way at the High Court

9 06 2009

Photos of Macassar march on the City

26 05 2009

AbM-WC march on City of Cape Town demanding an end to their harrassment by the Anti-Land Invasions Unit

AbM-WC march on City of Cape Town demanding an end to their harrassment by the Anti-Land Invasions Unit

For more photos, click here

M&G article on AbM’s challenge to the Slums Act

23 05 2009

Source: M & G

Abahlali baseMjondolo was joined by the Western Cape Anti-Eviction Campaign and other Poor Peoples Alliance members at the Constitutional Court.  Down with the Slums Act, Down!  Forward to Abahlali, Forward!

2009_05_22 M&G Slums Act AbM

Photos of May 2009 Gympie Street evictions

23 05 2009


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