Break the silence of abuse: De Lille

By Drum Digital
27 February 2013

Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille called on all communities on Wednesday to break the silence on women and child abuse.

"I call on communities to discard the selfish notion that speaking out will bring shame on themselves as individuals and on their families," she said during a council meeting.

De Lille said resources would be provided to metro police to enable the city to train members of the community to fight domestic violence.

"And our social development programmes to raise awareness of identifying incidents and how to respond to them in the context of gender violence will soon be activated in communities in all districts."

She said councillors themselves must carry the "truth" into communities.

"The truth that boys and girls, men and women, are to be treated with equal respect, and that neither one is more important than the other.

"The truth that the struggle for human rights and dignity are struggles that must be fought with constant vigilance."

De Lille said it was only through measured interventions that lasting change in attitudes and norms would be seen.

She also spoke about the fire at the beginning of 2013 which caused almost 800 families to lose their homes in BM Section, Khayelitsha.

"As this council knows, we have committed ourselves to the long-term plan of relocating all of the affected families to Bosasa, Mfuleni."

De Lille said that once all legal processes had been completed by October this year the site will eventually become a formalised area.

"Those who will move to Bosasa will be provided with a site with a temporary top structure, and with security of tenure."

She said the City has increased its targeted spending on the poor every year over the past six years.

"In this financial year, the City has spent 57 percent of the R18 billion allocated for direct service delivery in the city on the poor."

She said the number of toilets provided in informal settlements has more than doubled in that time, to just over 34,000 in the 2011/2012 financial year.

In 2011/2012, the budget provision for sewerage infrastructure was R130 million, and R20.2m was spent on providing water to informal settlements last financial year and, since 2006, almost 20,000 new electricity connections have been made.

De Lille added that vandalism was a problem that affected the entire city.

She used as an example the vandalism of recently newly constructed MyCiTi bus stops in Atlantis and on the Atlantic Seaboard.

"The result will be a diversion of funds from the next roll-out of the transportation system, to fixing phases of the project that were completed a while ago. That leads to delays in roll-out, which means delays in addressing the spatial legacy of apartheid planning."

She said when it came to vandalism the city had spent just over R115m in relation to sewers, just over R7m related to water and sanitation and just under R6m in relation to electricity.

"Vandals only set back the project of building a city that is a true home to all."

-by Sapa

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