Colchester in the Eastern Cape is a true reflection of South Africa. You have the rich living in townhouses and not so far you have Endlovini Informal Settlement that has poor services because political parties are busy politicking.
Residents of eNdumeni in Northern KwaZulu-Natal, who have been waiting for nearly 20 years to receive RDP houses are hopeful that justice will be done and Endumeni Municipality will be compelled to provide them with houses.
Residents of Ducats near East London in the Eastern Cape spent many years living in the shacks. In 2003, they were very happy when they were told that a construction company had been hired to build RDP houses for them. 625 Houses were supposed to be built in this township. But the houses for 64 families did not materialise. 42 houses were left unfinished and 22 houses have never been built at all.
Residents of Buffalo City Metropolitan Municipality use the Mayor’s report back to lash out at the City for lack of service delivery, especially in informal settlements.
The attempted removal of a land occupation in the Vaal area of Gauteng has claimed 3 lives already and occupiers are adamant that they will not be moved. The government through the police and private security have responded violently to land occupations throughout the country.
Members of the South African Communist Party from the Skenjana Roji district were picketing in front of the East London magistrate’s court to bring attention to the evictions caused by banks foreclosing on home loans.
The ongoing political motivated killings in Glebelands Hostel in Umlazi has claimed many lives and left families in disarray. Children are among the ones most affected by the violence.
Sweet Home Farm shack dwellers are not prepared to move to new houses built by the City of Cape Town. They say the houses are very small and there is no enough space for children to play.
The women of Glebelands bear the brunt of violence and they are left to fend for themselves after their husbands are killed. To date 93 people have lost their lives to Glebelands hitmen.
There has been an increasing number of land and housing activists that have been murdered lately. Mthunzi “Ras Moziah” Zuma was shot and killed during a road blockade next to the land they were occupying near Khayelitsha Mall. Less than a month later another land and housing activist in Imizamo Yethu in Hout Bay 41 kilometres west of Khayelitsha was shot by the police during a housing protest and later died in hospital.
Land and housing activists have pledged to continue taking and occupying vacant land despite brutal repression by the state and the killing of those who fight for land. The commitment was made at seminar in Khayelitsha Monday night where different groups of organisations representing activists from Durban, Johannesburg and Cape Town met to share their experiences of state and police brutality.
The gentrification that is taking place in central Johannesburg has left families evicted from Fattis Mansions last month, stranded in tents set up in a stadium south of the city. In what is effectively a refugee camp, the living conditions are bad. The Mayor of Johannesburg, Herman Mashaba from the Democratic Alliance, is an advocate for gentrification of the inner city, not the rights of the people living there.