AbM: Durban High Court Delays Bheki Cele’s Attempt at Forced Removal from Siyanda to the Richmond Farm Transit Camp

4 02 2009

Press Release from the Siyanda Abahlali baseMjondolo Branch
Hand written on Friday 30 January
Digitised late due to no electricity in Kennedy Road on Tuesday 3 February

The judge has adjourned this matter to the 6th of March 2009. We, the remaining residents of the Siyanda shacks, welcome the outcome of today’s hearing.

Everybody, rich or poor, has a life to live.
The Department of Transport has continued to reject our request for a negotiated solution. They have continued to argue that our refusal to accept that the houses promised to us should be corrupted to other people is costing them hundreds of thousands of rand a day. They have continued to argue that our refusal to move to their government shacks, what the people call the amatins, (the Richmond Farm transit camp) is costing them hundreds of thousands of Rands a day. They have continued to say that the demolition of our homes and our forced removal to their government shacks is an urgent priority and that there can be no further delays.

We continue to say that everybody, rich or poor, has a life to live.

We continue to demand that we should be given the houses promised to us. We continue to say that if the Department of Transport continues to fail to give us what they have promised us then we should be allowed to remain in our homes. We only agreed to their demand to demolish our homes because they promised to replace our shacks with houses.

Promises made must be promises kept.

Transit camps are big tin cans and human beings are not fishes. No person should be put in the undignified accommodation of the transit camps.

Everybody, rich or poor, has a life to live.

We have been lied to and we have been robbed. We have been to meetings and been disrespected, we have marched and been beaten. Now we are going to the High Court. We strongly believe that, unlike Bheki Cele, Nandi Mandela or the police, the judge will recognise our humanity.

We thank our lawyers again. In this system the poor cannot approach the courts without the solidarity of lawyers who work for God. In this system we always eventually run into tear gas and rubber bullets when we try to insist on our dignity outside of the court. The police are waiting at the end of every path. But everybody, rich or poor, has a life to live.  Therefore we have to change this system so that everyone, rich and poor, has the same access to the courts. But, in the meantime, we thank our lawyers again.

Zodwa Nsibande: 082 830 2707
Mamu Nxumalo: 076 333 9386
Buzani Cele: 073 471 2180

Siyanda – Digital Archive:

  • Siyanda residents wounded by police rubber bullets during road blockade, 4 December 2006
  • Protesters hurt as police fire rubber bullets, Daily News, 5 December 2005
  • What Happened at or to the SMI, 18 December 2006
  • Abantu abampofu namaPhoyisa, 14 January 2007
  • The Strong Poor and the Police, 19 January 2008
  • ‘No one can have it if we can’t’, Daily News 20 August 2008
  • Victory in Court While Evictions Continue Outside, 26 August 2008
  • Ward councillor locked in home over service delay, 12 September 2008
  • Isolezwe: Bebesho ukubakhipha ngodli ezindlini zomxhaso, 16 September 2008
  • Siyanda Crisis: Evictions, Police Intimidation, Unjust Housing Allocation etc., 17 September 2008
  • Siyanda Pictures, 17 September 2008
  • Letter to Obed Mlaba on the Siyanda Crisis from the Centre on Housing Rights & Evictions, 24 October 2008
  • Siyanda – the day before the big march, 9 November 2008
  • Memorandum of Demands by the Siyanda Abahlali baseMjondolo Branch, 10 November 2008
  • Pictures of the Siyanda March (1), 10 November 2008
  • Pictures of the Siyanda March(2), 10 November 2008
  • KZN housing development threatened, Daily News 13 November 2008
  • Pictures of the meeting to plan resistance to Bheki Cele’s evictions & pictures of the transit camp to which people are supposed to be forcibly removed, 7 December 2008
  • Bheki Cele Threatens 61 Siyanda Families with Forced Removal, 7 December 2008
  • Siyanda Abahlali baseMjondolo Letter to the State Attorney, 9 December 2008
  • Pictures of the removal to the transit camp (accepted by 2 families), 11 December 2008
  • Siyanda on Google Earth, uploaded 12 December 2008
  • 50 Families Remain in the their Homes and Refuse Eviction to “Transit Camp” Under Heavy Police Presence, 18 December 2008
  • Siyanda, Report Back from the High Court, 9 January 2009 (This picture set also shows the size of the Siyanda shacks
  • Siyanda: Agreement on Negotiations, Court Date Set Down for 27 January, 12 January 2009
  • Abahlali baseMjondolo answering affidavit, 22nd January 2009
  • CALS Statement on Forced Removal of Siyanda Residents to Transit Camps, 23 January 2009
  • Mercury Op-Ed: ‘Forced Removals’, by Kerry Chance, Marie Huchzermeyer and Mark Hunter 29 January 2009
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    One response

    5 02 2009
    BSM Group

    Everybody, rich or poor, has a life to live. This statement is so true

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