Reclaim the City vows to fight Tafelberg sale

2017-03-23 22:59
Outside the Sea Point Methodist Church where Reclaim the City hold a public meeting to discuss the sale of the Tafelberg property (James de Villiers, News24)

Outside the Sea Point Methodist Church where Reclaim the City hold a public meeting to discuss the sale of the Tafelberg property (James de Villiers, News24)

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Cape Town – Reclaim the City intends fighting the Western Cape government’s decision to sell the Tafelberg property, in defiance of calls to develop it into low-income housing.

“This is still a war that we are still going to fight and we are not moving back from this – we are moving forward,” the organisation’s chapter chairperson Shiela Madikane said on Thursday.

“We are still carrying on with this war and we still need to fight this war till the end,” she told about 150 people at the Sea Point Methodist Church.

The organisation, which campaigns for affordable housing in Cape Town, was reacting to the provincial government’s announcement on Wednesday that the Tafelberg property, in Sea Point, would be sold to the Phyllis Jowell Jewish Day school for R135m.

The proceeds from the sale would be used to complete the upgrade of the provincial government building in Dorp Street.

Reclaim the City wanted the Tafelberg property developed into affordable inner city housing.

Its members intended picketing against the proposed sale, in front of Tafelberg, on Monday from 04:30 until 17:00, Madikane said.

“As I am standing here I am facing eviction, but I don’t care and I don’t mind about that because the more they are evicting us, they making me just stronger and stronger,” she said.

Madikane said the organisation was considering legal action.

“Our lawyers will go with us to court and review this again in court.”

Supporters of Reclaim the city listening to plans on how to address the sale of the Tafelberg property. (James de Villiers, News24)

In a statement on Wednesday, the Western Cape government said it was considering developing properties in Belhar and Woodstock for affordable housing.

Reclaim the City’s Emile Engel said this was not a concrete commitment by the province.

“People will tender for it [the properties] and then there will be a condition attached for affordable housing.

“Unfortunately there’s no detail about what that condition will entail. How many units will it be? Will it be 10 units, will it be five units? And we don’t imagine that it will be much.”

SACP Cape Town deputy chairperson Thembela Duka said the province’s decision was a return to apartheid.

“They are moving our people far away from the city centre. They are prioritising private developers,” Duka said.

Reclaim the City is a subsidiary of Ndifuna Ukwazi.

Read more on:    cape town  |  housing

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