Media: Backyard dwellers mount own protest

7 09 2011

September 7 2011 at 12:29pm – Cape Times

ct backyard Dwellers_4314 (18959132) (18969935)The backyarders, led by the Abahlali baseMjondolo movement, wanted mayor Patricia de Lille to address them. Photo: Neil Baynes

Mzoxolo Budaza

WHILE Cape Town mayor Patricia De Lille addressed a meeting with backyarder representatives at the Civic Centre, Abahlali baseMjondolo were protesting in Khayelitsha.

“Those who attended that meeting (at the Civic Centre) are the friends of the city. The suffering people are here with us,” Abahlali spokesman Mzonke Poni said.

Early yesterday De Lille had moved her scheduled meeting with the backyarders from Oliver Tambo Hall to the Civic Centre after Abahlali threatened to force her to allow all concerned inside the hall. Read the rest of this entry »

23 Mandela Park Backyarders Arrested Now

20 09 2009
Anti-Eviction Campaign Press Release
on Behalf of Mandela Park Backyarders
15h00 on 20 Semptember, 2009

23 Mandela Park Backyard Community Members have been arrested and are currently being held in a waiting cell in the Harare Police Station in Khayelitsha on wrongful assumptions by the police. Protests have occurred based on the false promise of housing by Minister Madikizele. Read the rest of this entry »

The City is playing favourites by only helping some flooded communities

16 07 2009

Anti-Eviction Campaign Press Release
Thursday 16 July, 2009

More than ten Cape Flats informal settlements hardest hit by last week’s floods did not receive any emergency assistance at all from the City of Cape Town or the Provincial Government.  This include Tambo Square, Barcelona, New Rest and Gxa Gxa Square in the Gugulethu area.  In addition to this, the city continues to ignore the plight of vulnerable backyard dwellers whose homes have been flooded.

Many AEC communities as well as communities other poor settlements are now in dire straights as a result of recent floods.  In Khayelitsha, spurred on by massive floods in their communities, many Abahlali baseMjondolo settlements have closed down Landsdowne Road in protest against the government’s refusal to provide the poor with land or housing.

But still, the City and Province continues to play favourites only supporting some settlements while ignoring others.  Disaster management only shows up at high-profile communities or communities that do not protest against the local DA or ANC councillors.  This party politics is destroying Cape Town.

And yet, while the Anti-Eviction Campaign and other poor people condemn the selective support given to flooded communities, we also strongly condemn the government for their short-sightedness.  The floods happen every single year and the government does absolutely nothing to prevent them from happening.  They would rather give blankets and soup to distressed families because its good for publicity.

But these floods are easy to prevent.  The government could just build more adequate houses for the poor.  An even easier and more sustainable approach would be to grant these poor communities some well-located open and serviced land where they can build their own houses (not TRAs like blikkiesdorp which are worse than informal settlements ).  But the government would rather sell off its land to private developers than give it too the poor.  So, ultimately, the crisis of flooding in the informal settlements is caused by government’s anti-poor policies. Its not the weather, its the unequal distribution of adequate land!

The Anti-Eviction Campaign condemns this short-sightedness!  How come us poor people understand how to plan for sustainable cities whereas the government officials with all their degrees know nothing about pro-poor development?

For more information, contact AEC coordinator Mncedisi Twalo at 0785808646.
Also contact Mbulelo Zuba, AEC community leader from Barelona, at  0736747077

Media: ‘All we want is a patch to call home’

18 06 2009

27 people share a one-roomed shack after being removed from Macassar land

June 16, 2009 Edition 1
Fouzia van der Fort – Cape Argus

IN ALL her 27 years, Macassar mother-of-two Ronelle Muller has never lived in a brick house – in fact, she has moved from backyard to backyard more than 12 times.

Although she wishes for something better for her children, the reality is that Muller and her family call a single-room shack home. And they share it with about 26 other people. Read the rest of this entry »

ABM-WC Urgent Press Release: Macassar residents occupying empty land as we speak

18 05 2009
Abahlali baseMjondolo Emergency Press Release
Monday 18th May, 2009

As we speak, members of Abhlali baseMjondolo of the Western Cape from Macassar Village are occupying the land that they’ve been clearing for the past week.

Abahlali are taking the land because, as backyard dwellers, they’ve been clear victims of high rents which are resulting in their collective eviction. Residents say that they have no choice. In order to protect the livelihood of themselves and their families, they have to take this unused and empty government land for their community.

For an update on the current situation, contact Mzonke Poni at 073 2562 036.

For updates and photos tomorrow, visit Khayelitsha Struggles.

For more information on the cleanup campaign, click on the following press releases: 12th May and 13th May and 14th May.

For pictures of the cleanup campaign, click here.

For coverage in the Cape Argus, click here.

Media: Anti-eviction group boycotts elections

23 04 2009
23 April 2009
Anna Majavu
Source: The Sowetan

The elections went off without a hitch in Gugulethu and only time will tell if the Western Cape Anti-Eviction Campaign’s boycott of the polls had made any impact on the political scene.

About 50 members of the group held an impromptu protest outside Gugulethu police station yesterday as part of an

DISGRUNTLED: Members of the Anti-Eviction Campaign hold a protest outside the Gugulethu police station.PHOTO: ANNA MAJAVU

DISGRUNTLED: Members of the Anti-Eviction Campaign hold a protest outside the Gugulethu police station.PHOTO: ANNA MAJAVU

elections boycott also supported by Durban’s Abahlali base Mjondolo and Johannesburg’s Anti-Privatisation Forum.

In a statement released yesterday, the Anti-Eviction Campaign said real issues, like the lack of housing, had been swept under the carpet by politicians.

Parties spent too much time focusing on the personal lives of other party leaders and on promising “vague slogans” such as “hope” and “change”.

A protester, Margaret Sxubane, 42, said she was “very hungry”.

“I didn’t eat all day and I rarely have food in my backyard shack.

“I voted three times before but why should I vote now?”

Sxubane said if someone from the ANC came to give her a key to one of the empty houses in nearby Nyanga, she would vote immediately.

Violet Skosana, 70, said she had been living in a backyard shack for 30 years.

“How can I vote when I was born in Cape Town, have been on the waiting list for a house for 15 years and yet I still live in a backyard?” she asked.

David Boqwana, 57, said he was boycotting the elections because “we get fokol from voting.” Read the rest of this entry »

Media: Backyarders hot

19 02 2009
19/02/2009 10:54 AM – (SA)
Source: CityVision


HUNDREDS of backyarders under the banner of the Anti-Eviction Campaign (AEC) led by Mncedisi Twalo converged at Gugulethu Sport Complex to listen to MEC of Housing Whitey Jacobs about their plight on Sunday.

Before the meeting could be official, Twalo gave the attendees a highlight about an incident of the previous week where police allegedly harassed, assaulted and arrested ACE members including himself.

As Twalo subjected the MEC to a tongue lashing, Jacobs sat quietly listening.

He said about sixty old people were shot with rubber bullets and about nine are still nursing injuries in hospital. Hundreds lost their cell-phones, cash and clothes. Read the rest of this entry »

Deliver or resign! Housing MEC at Gugs backyarders meeting

13 02 2009
Gugulethu AEC Press Release
Venue: Gugulethu Sports Complex
Date and time: 15th of February at 14h00

In our last public meeting with MEC for Housing on the 2nd of November 2008, Mr Whitey Jacobs told our community and reporters that, for the past 15 years, there has been “no provincial housing plan for backyard dwellers in Cape Town”.  As media from the Argus, Times, the Sun, the Daily Voice and the Sowetan witnessed, he further promised that if he did not come up with a plan that satisfied residents within 2 months, he would resign from office.

At our weekly meeting on Sunday 15th of February 2009 at 2pm, the MEC will be presenting his ‘comprehensive plan’ for the backyarders of Gugulethu, Langa and Nyanga that, he says, includes dishing out over 200 houses for AEC backyarders.  He will also get back to us about his promise to build public housing for backyard dwellers in wealthy areas such as Muizenberg, Constantia and Mowbray.

We look forward to the MEC being the first minister to not break his promise to the poor.  But in the likely event that he does break his promise to provide us with houses, we will hold him to accountable to his promise – to resign if he does not deliver.

Contact Mncedisi at 078 5808 646 and Pule at 073 6448 919

Gugs AEC meet with Housing MEC

27 01 2009
Gugulethu AEC Press Statement
Tuesday January 27, 2009

At noon earlier today, the Gugulethu AEC traveled in numbers to the offices of the Provincial Housing Department in town to meet with the MEC for Housing.

In our last public meeting with MEC for Housing, Mr Whitey Jacobs told our community that, for the past 15 years, there has been “no provincial housing plan for backyard dwellers in Cape Town”. After consulting with the communities of Gugulethu, Langa and Nyanga, Jacobs promised to meet our demands and come up with a strategic plan for backyarders in our communities that took our own views into account. As media from the Argus, Times, the Sun, the Daily Voice and the Sowetan witnessed, he further promised that if he did not come up with a plan that satisfied residents within 2 months, he would resign from office.

At the report-back meeting today, the Jacobs promised to come to the Gugulethu Sports Complex on Sunday the 15th of February at 14h00 for the AEC’s weekly mass meeting.

  • He also claimed that his department was taking management of the N2 Gateway Project and allocation of houses over from Thubelisha Homes because of mismanagement. This contradicts what his office told Delft-Symphony AEC last week.

  • He promised that Gugulethu backyard dwellers will be accommodated in the N2 Gateway as well as in projects in Khayelitsha.

  • The MEC futher stated that the land backyarders have attempted to occupy in Gugulethu (ELF# RR448 on Lansdowne Road) is owned by the City and is slated to be developed into housing for the backyard dwellers.

  • Finally, he had previously promised to come up with a plan to house backyard dwellers in Mowbray, Muizenberg and Constantia and promised to provide more details of the plan on 15 of February.

We look forward to participating in ironing out these plans with the MEC at our mass meeting. As backyard dwellers, we hope that this is not just another promise that politicians make just before elections. If he is unable to fulfill these promises, we expect him to honorably resign from his position.

For more information, contact Mncedisi at 078 580 8646 and Speelman at 073 9825 725

Media: Backyard dwellings growing – SAIRR

25 11 2008

Note: This is not good news and is clearly a result of anti-poor policies such as the KZN Slums act and illegal actions by the Land Invasions Unit.

November 25 2008 at 09:47AM
Source: SAPA

More and more informal dwellings are being built as backyard properties and not in informal settlements, the SA Institute of Race Relations (SAIRR) said on Tuesday.

According to a SAIRR report, between 1996 and 2007, the total number of households residing in informal dwellings grew by 24,2 percent from 1,45 million to 1,80 million. Read the rest of this entry »


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