Bloody underwear protest in Johannesburg – to demand free water

12 02 2009

Louise McAuliffe
12 February 2009
Source: Sowetan

Women without water and sanitation are as good as dead and have no dignity
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An estimated 65 protesters demanding “free water for all” marched through downtown Johannesburg today – some wearing unwashed, blood-soiled underwear over their clothes in an attempt to demonstrate that access to water is a basic need.

“Women without water and sanitation are as good as dead and have no dignity,” said Petunia Nkhasi, co-ordinator of the ‘Coalition Against Water Privatisation’ campaign.

Nkhasi said pre-paid meters are limiting access to water. “This inability to access water denies us as human beings and the right to life.

“What we hope to achieve today with the delivery of our special memorandum, is to appeal to Mayor Amos Masondo to withdraw his action against Judge Moroa Tsoka’s ruling that the forced installation of pre-paid meters was unconstitutional.

“If Mayor Masondo does not withdraw his action then we will take the issue to the Constitutional Court.

“Water is a basic need so it should be free for all.”

She added: “When the ANC were lobbying for the elections they said ’free water, free this and free that’ – it is time that they started to practice what they are preaching”.

“We demand free water now, especially for women.

“We believe that the selling of water is unfair.

“Water is life and water is a natural thing that comes from God – no one should be able to make the decision to sell water.”

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