Media: More barricades on way – protesters

18 05 2009

18 May 2009, 15:23
By Luleka Damane and Natasha Prince
Source: Cape Times

Residents of Site 5 in Du Noon have vowed to continue burning tyres on Koeberg Road and the N7 freeway if the provincial government ignores their demands for land and services.

This morning the area was quiet, according to community representatives after residents had burned piles of wood on Koeberg Road last night.
At around 11am, resident Zoliswa Gila said she and others had gathered at the Doorndag Community Hall, waiting for feedback from councillor Vincent Berg, who is the Blaauwberg area subcouncil chairperson.

Meanwhile community leader Peace Stemela said there were no protests this morning.

Residents are demanding that a piece of privately owned land near the N7, which is set to be sold to a private company, instead be sold to the provincial government so housing can be built on it for them.

Cape Town Traffic Services media spokesperson Merle Lourens said this morning that Potsdam Road, which runs through the informal settlement, was opened to traffic at around 11.30am.

After the weekend’s torrential rain, residents also complained on Sunday that their shacks were flooded.

“It is better to be out in the streets protesting because our houses are full of water now and we want to move from this place,” said Gila on Sunday.

Another resident, who declined to give his name, said mayor Dan Plato should see the way they lived. “We want him to come here; we have had enough of this place. We want land where we can get water and electricity,” he said.

Albert Mazula, also of Site 5, said that shacks were built too close to each other, which had made it difficult to move belongings when a fire broke out recently, razing at least 30 homes.

A fourth resident, Mzonke Madlokazi, warned that residents would close Koeberg Road and the N7 for the whole week if they were ignored by the provincial government.

“Houses were promised to us a long time ago and they said we must vote if we want to complain. We voted, so now we are complaining,” he said.

Residents alleged that shots were fired to disperse protesters picketing outside community leaders’ houses yesterday.

Table View police this morning confirmed yesterday’s protests, but declined to comment further, saying only that a statement would be released later today.

* This article was originally published on page 3 of The Cape Argus on May 18, 2009

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