Solidarity: Rural Network response to another killing by Farm Watch

26 07 2010

Another life has been claimed by the farm watch in eMasangweni at the farm owned by Mr. Channel of eNkwalini(Eshowe)

On the 23 July 2010 Mr. Patrick Mpanza was shot dead by the farm watch that is responsible for the farm of Mr. Channel. This incident happened while he was walking with his four kids, whom are all girls. According to the child that is the eye witness the farm watch told them to lie down on the ground, two of the four kids ran away while the other one was left with the father on the ground; however the father refused to lie down. By so doing the farm watch then shot him on the forehead.

The child that was left with the father asked the father if he was hurt, and the father replied by saying yes I am hurt. The child asked where you are hurt. That was the last words from the father, he couldn’t even reply to the child’s question. Later the child realized that the father had passed away.

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Solidarity: Serving our Life Sentence in the Shacks

26 07 2010

Friday, 16 July 2010
Serving our Life Sentence in the Shacks

People all over South Africa have been asking the leaders of Abahlali baseMjondolo as to why the government continues to ignore the demands of the shack dwellers. They have been asking why after all the marches, statements, reports and meetings the Kennedy Road settlement continues to get burnt down through the endless shack fires. They have been referring in particular to the recent Kennedy Road shack fire on Sunday, 4 July 2010 that took four lives, leaving more than three thousand people displaced and homeless.

Without much more words to explain this continuous tragedy we have replied that in fact the shack dwellers of South Africa are serving a life sentence. Everybody knows that we are the people who do not count in this society. But the truth that must be faced up to is that we have been sentenced to permanent exclusion from this society.

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Solidarity: The Kennedy 12 Case Postponed – the Jailed Comrades to be Released

14 07 2010

Monday, 12 July 2010
Abahlali baseMjondolo Press Statement

The Kennedy 12 Case Postponed Until 29 November – the Five Jailed Comrades to be Released Tomorrow

The political interference around this case continued in the lead up to the start of the trial today. The prisoners were not brought to court and the state witnesses were not summoned to appear in court making it impossible for the trial to begin.

Neither the Investigating Officer nor the prosecutor could explain why the prisoners were not brought to the court or why the state witnesses had not been summoned to appear in court.

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Solidarity: Standing with the Poor People’s Alliance at the 2010 US Social Forum

7 07 2010

As the World Cup began in South Africa in June 2010, the social movements of the Poor People’s Alliance continue to face off against the governing elite’s escalation of harassment, repression, and displacement.  At the same time, activists gathered at the second United States Social Forum — to bring together U.S.-based movements fighting poverty, racism and oppression, within the States as well as globally.  Some of the poor people’s organizations that gathered in the embattled and resilient, majority-Black city of Detroit for the USSF had met with members of Abahlali baseMjondolo and the Western Cape Anti-Eviction Campaign who visited the U.S. in 2009, finding common cause and inspiration in their creative struggles and visions for a better world.

On June 25 in Detroit, members of the Chicago Anti-Eviction Campaign, Coalition of Immokalee Workers, Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, Picture the Homeless, Poverty Initiative, and other movement activists at the USSF gathered to play football — as a solidarity message to our allies in South Africa and their Poor People’s World Cup games happening at the same time.

We are with you!   Aluta continua!   Amandla Ngwethu!

For past examples of New York City-based solidarity statements and actions, see here and here.

AbM: “A Quiet Coup” reviews attacks on AbM

2 06 2010

A Quiet Coup
South Africa’s largest social movement under attack

By Toussaint Losier
Originally published in Spanish at Desinformémonos
An earlier version of this article appeared in Left Turn Magazine

At roughly 11:30pm on September 26th, a group of 30 to 40 men – survivors are still unsure about the actual numbers –surrounded the community hall in Kennedy Road shack settlement in Durban, South Africa. Brandishing sticks, machetes, and automatic weapons and echoing the language of the state-sponsored internecine political conflict that tore through South Africa during the last years of apartheid, the mob launched an attack on a meeting of the Abahlali baseMjondolo (AbM) Youth League taking place inside the hall. In the melee that followed, over a dozen people were injured, with four people left dead and the attackers left in control of the hall.

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Really, it is a shame

15 04 2010
by Lindela Figlan of Abahlali baseMjondolo
An abridged version was published in the Daily News on 15 April 2010

South Africans are facing tough times.  It is a time when there is no humanity, a time when no one in government is interested to listen to your story if you are a poor person.  There are good thinkers in this country, but if their ideologies are coming from the bottom up, from poor communities, no one is prepared to listen carefully.
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Shack dwellers up in arms

23 03 2010

Durban marchers want better service

23 March 2010
Corrinne Louw – Sowetan

There was a tense stand-off between protesters and police when members of the Abahlali baseMjondolo took to the streets of Durban yesterday to demand that the government take action to help the poor and homeless.

ANGRY: Hundreds of shack dwellers protest in Durban yesterday

Shop owners closed their doors when the police tested their water spray trucks and cordoned off roads with a heavily armed police force when the marchers stormed down West Street.

The march by the Abahlali baseMjondolo (shack dwellers association) and Rural Network had to be diverted from the Durban City Hall, with the police and marchers squaring off. Earlier city officials had obtained a court order to prevent protesters from gathering near the city hall. Read the rest of this entry »

A Memorandum of Demands to President Jacob Zuma

22 03 2010

Monday, 22 March 2010 14, 2005

We, members and supporters of Abahlali baseMjondolo and the Rural Network in the province of KwaZulu-Natal, are democrats committed to the flourishing of this country. We speak for ourselves and direct our own struggles. We have no hidden agendas. We have been mobilised by our suffering and our hopes for a better life. We believe that it is time to take seriously the fact that South Africa belongs to all who live in it.

We come from the townships of Inanda, KwaMashu and Lamontville. We come from the farms in eNkwalini, New Hanover, Howick, KwaNjobokazi, Melmoth, Utrecht, Babanango and eShowe. We come from the flats of Hillary, Portview, Ridge View (Cato Manor), Wentworth and New Dunbar. We come from the shacks of Joe Slovo, Foreman Road, Clare Estate, Palmiet Road, Quarry Road, Motala Heights, Siyanda, Umkhumbane, New eMmaus, Pemary Ridge, Arnett Drive, Lindelani ,Richmond Farm and, yes, Kennedy Road. We come from the transit camps of Richmond Farm, eNsimbini, Ridge View (Transact Camp), Cato Manor and New Dunbar. Read the rest of this entry »

Abahlali baseMjondolo Press Conference on Friday 19 March 2010

17 03 2010

Abahlali baseMjondolo Press Statement
Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Venue: St Paul’s Church, 161 Pine Street, Durban 031-305 466
Date: Friday 19 March 2010
Time: 10h00 a.m.

There is a deep corruption at the top of our society and a deep anger at the bottom of our society. As the dirty deeds of the tenderpreneurs are being dragged into the light by the media and as the police become ever more violent the poor are taking to the streets across the country in ever greater numbers. We continue to believe that the only way for this country to heal itself is for the poor to organise the poor so that we can increase our power and decrease that of the politicians, the rich and their civil society. Since the attack on our movement in September last year we have expanded into eight new areas despite ongoing repression and harassment. Now is the time to unite all our branches, the old areas and the new, to defy the ongoing campaign of repression, and to take our demands to the streets of our city.
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When liberators become oppressors

23 02 2010

Tue, 2010-02-23 16:18

Revd Roger Scholtz of the Methodist Church has castigated the authorities for turning themselves into oppressors of the people they once liberated. Read the rest of this entry »


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