Services demanded

2019-03-14 06:00
Masakhane Informal settlement community members from Site B. from left: Sisanda Ngaleka, Nontembiso Luphuwane, Daniswa Jaca, Nangamso Ngwalase, Zukiswa Nceka and Nomthunzi Gxarisa. PHOTO: unathi obose

Masakhane Informal settlement community members from Site B. from left: Sisanda Ngaleka, Nontembiso Luphuwane, Daniswa Jaca, Nangamso Ngwalase, Zukiswa Nceka and Nomthunzi Gxarisa. PHOTO: unathi obose

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Masakhane shack dwellers, in Site B, took to the streets last week to voice their dissatisfaction about poor living conditions and demanded houses.

The disgruntled residents marched to the Sub-council 9 offices to hand over their grievances to Malusi Booi, the City’s mayoral committee member for Human Settlements. However, councillor Monde Nqulwana accepted the memorandum.

Among other things, they complained about the lack of service delivery. Some claimed to have lived in the area for more than 30 years and had not seen a single change. The informal settlement has four communal taps and nine flushing toilets.

Residents said they wanted their lives to be improved and vowed to intensify their fight if nothing was done.

Community leader Nontembiso Luphuwane said they want proper houses. She accused the City of Cape Town of making empty promises. She said some people registered for houses while Khayelitsha was still under the defunct Tygerberg Municipality.

She said councillors have come and gone, but their living conditions have remained the same. “The current councillor (Nqulwana) is the fifth councillor in the ward,” she said, claiming all the previous councillors failed them.

Luphuwane described their living conditions as “appalling”. “We have two rows of flushing toilets. The other row has four toilets and the other one has five. People have to queue for the toilet. We don’t have enough taps and there is no electricity,” she stated.

Resident Nomthunzi Gxarisa said: “We’ve been engaging with the City officials since 2002 asking for houses but our efforts were fruitless. We also had numerous meetings with the officials from Human Settlements provincial minister Bonginkosi Madikizela’s office.” Gxarisa said the area has elderly and disabled people and are more at risk. “When it’s raining the shacks flood and the City does nothing. They only give us blankets and soup which do not make any difference,” she explained.

Nqulwana said he forwarded the memorandum to Booi’s office.

When City Vision asked him about his plans for the area Nqalwana claimed that the City had no plans for the informal settlements in Khayelitsha. “It’s been a while now that shack dwellers from Khayelitsha are not relocating to the new houses. That means there is no plan yet,”said Nqulwana.

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