21 December 2008
About 50 shacks burnt in the Kennedy Road settlement last night. This is the 8th fire in the settlement this year.
The fire started when a candle was knocked over just after midnight. So far there are no reports of major injuries. The fire brigade, as is now (after years of struggle) routine arrived quickly and provided a good service. We appreciate that. We trust that the Municipality will, as they began doing this year (after years of struggle), support the people who have lost their homes with building materials.
The Kennedy Road community welcomes all the progress recently made in the long negotiations with the eThekwini Municipality about upgrading the settlement where it is. However it is unacceptable that the Municipality continues to refuse to electrify shack settlements and that when people electrify themselves they face armed and often violent de-electrification at the hands of the police and Securicor.
No amount of shooting will stop people from electrifying their homes themselves. People have to do what they have to do to keep their families and their communities safe. And everyone has the same right to a modern life.
For further information and comment please contact Mdlalose on 072 1328 458 or Mashumi on 079 5843 995.
It has been a year of fire and struggles for electricity and against fire. See:
(The Year of Fire) Post Annual General Meeting Speech by S’bu Zikode, 14 December 2008
Fire at XA Settlement AbM Western Cape Statement, 6 October, 2008
No more fires! No more evictions! The poor assert their right to the city!, Western Cape Anti-Eviction Campaign Press Statement, 21 September 2008
Slums Built on the Ashes of Apartheid, Sunday Tribune, 21 September 2008
Massive Fire Devastates the Foreman Road Settlement, 13 September 2008
A Big Devil in the Jondolos: A report on shack fires, 8 September 2008
Another Huge Fire Devastates the Kennedy Road Settlement 31 August 2008
Land & Housing: The burning issues Speech by S’bu Zikode at Diakonia, 28 August 2008
Armed De-electrification in the Motala Heights Settlement, 19 August 2008
Abahlali baseMjondolo eThekwini Calls for City Wide Shack Fires Summit, 8 August 2008
The Kennedy Road Settlement is Burning (Again) (& Again) (As is Ash Road), 8 June 2008
City Escalates Its War on the Poor: Mass Disconnections from Electricity at Gun Point in the Kennedy Road Settlement, 15 February 2008