Warm welcome for book about District Six

2019-08-20 06:00
Farieda Abrahams and her adopted son, Hamza Du Plessis.

Farieda Abrahams and her adopted son, Hamza Du Plessis.

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A story of District Six’s history, being written by an ordinary citizen who saw it all, has shaken hearts of many, filling them with eagerness to read it and find out more.

People from different areas have shown interest, and the Lentergeur-based author says for many, My Lover My Country is not just a book but a closure of what happened.

She says there are many untold stories and hidden truths as to what happened during the forced removals – and the past has shaped the lives of those who were affected.

This is a story of what happened when the apartheid government declared District Six a white’s only area and how this was responsible for all the heartaches allegedly felt by many coloured people (“Tales of the District”, People’s Post, 30 July 2019).

She was speaking following a successful launch of the book at the Museum Home Coming Centre in District Six on Saturday 3 August.

About 60 people of all ages attended.

One of the readers who were impressed with the book was Cisrelda Williams from Ocean View.

She says that she can relate to Abrahams’ narration.

Her family was not forcefully removed from District Six, but Simon’s Town. She says the way Abrahams describes the scenarios is similar to the stories she heard from her parents.

She says the book is a must-read for young people, especially those that are patriots, wanting to know the truth and eager to see change.

Another reader, Annelise Lombard from Philippi East says reading the book got her an insight into what happened and how the forced removals impacted lives, resulting in angry and violent communities. She says the book interested her because it tells a story of a person she can relate to.

Abrahams was 12 years old when they moved to Hanover Park and memories never faded in her mind.

“I was very confused,” she says.

“It is about time we tell our stories – time for people to hear it from us.”

She encourages Capetonians to start writing their stories and educate each other.

“It took me back to painful memories of my childhood days,” Abrahams warns.

“However, it gave me some closure.”

It took her nine months to put the 220-page book together.

She says since her book launch, even youth in her community phone her and go to her house asking for help with assignments, and she is glad to share her knowledge with the public.

V The book costs R150 and is available directly from Farieda Abrahams. For more information call her on 061 461 8427.

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