Media: Give us decent housing!

28 07 2011

Rusana Philander – The New Age

About 500 people protested over access to housing outside the High Court and offices of the city on Wednesday.

The protests came as 16 people from Tafelsig, Mitchells Plain, were due to appear in the High Court after the city obtained an

DEMANDING: Protestors gather outside the Cape Town High Court on Wednesday to demand decent homes. Picture: Rusana Philander

interdict against them.

The case is related to the invasion of the Swartklip sports field and Kapteinsklip in Mitchells Plain by more than 4000 people two months ago.

During the invasion many people were injured and the land invaders’ possessions impounded. The city has since obtained an interdict to remove people from the land.

The protesters who gathered outside the court yesterday were from the Mitchells Plain Backyarders Association.

They carried placards and chanted: “Access to housing is a constitutional right and we want houses for our children.”

The court hearing was postponed to August 30 to give lawyers representing the city council a chance to study the affidavit filed by the 16 people fighting their eviction.

The protestors later marched to the city offices and handed over a detailed memorandum to mayor Patricia de Lille.

The document calls on the city to withdraw the court case against the 16 people and to also withdraw the public violence case against another 18 people from Tafelsig.

It also demands the scrapping of the anti-land invasion unit and has called on council leaders to meet with the community of Tafelsig to look at ways to resolve the matter.

The protesters also want the authorities to convene a housing and land summit and to inform communities about their plans with regards to addressing the housing needs of the people.

A 28-year-old woman from Tafelsig, who asked to remain anonymous, said that she was staying with both her children in one bedroom. “It is not nice to live like this,” she said.

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