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Cape Town shutdown: Roads closed to traffic, protesters demand housing

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The Cape Town shutdown, protest action spearheaded by the controversial minority rights group, Gatvol Capetonian, has begun in the Mother City.

Early on Thursday morning, disgruntled community members took to the streets to voice their frustrations with the City’s inadequate approach to Human Settlements and, more directly, low-cost housing.

Why are Cape Town communities protesting?

Leader of the organisation, Fadiel Adams, has been intensely critical of the City’s ‘false electoral promises’, which, he says, guaranteed a renewed approach to social development, particularly within the realm of housing. Speaking to the Cape Times, Adams explained:

“When Bonginkosi Madikezela (the DA provincial leader and former MEC for Human Settlements, who is now the MEC for Transport and Public Works) started coming into our communities, being so ‘shocked’ about the conditions people are living in and that kind of claptrap, making promises of land and housing.

And then he moved to a new portfolio so the promises can start with a new MEC, who can claim ignorance to what the previous administration did, that’s when we decided this needs to happen.”

Adams also urged communities to practice restraint during the protest action, adding that the Total Shutdown movement would be a peaceful demonstration, free of riotous behaviour.

JP Smith, mayoral committee member for Safety and Security in Cape Town, noted the planned protest action but denied being contacted by the organisers. Smith assured residents that law enforcement agencies would fulfil their mandate and mitigate any serious disruptions or threats of violence.

Cape Town shutdown: Major road closures in the Mother City

The City of Cape Town released a statement on Friday morning, warning motorists to exercise extreme caution when traveling through volatile areas. The following roads have been disrupted the Cape Town shutdown protests:

Stellenbosch Arterial, roads closed between Adam Tas Rd and the R300, expect delays. Use alternative routes.

  • Voortrekker rd, road closed in both directions at 3rd Ave, Kensington, expect delays. Use alternative routes.
  • Wale St and Buitengracht St, Buitengracht St closed at Short Market St towards Table Mountain, expect delays. Use alternative routes.
  • The R304 and Mamre Rds in Atlantis, the R304 is closed at Mamre Rd entrance to Mamre and  Paradise lane closed at Silver stream, expect delays. Use alternative route.
  • Az Berman Dr in Mitchells Plain, Roads closed between Wespoort Dr and Kerrem St, expect delays, use alternative routes.
  • Prince George Dr in Parkwood, roads closed between Dick Burton and De Waal Dr westbound, expect delays. Use alternative routes.

The above warnings will be updated as and when we receive more information. Always check back for the latest updates.

Other areas which are likely to experience disruptions today, include:

  • Beacon Valley
  • Tafelsig, Eastridge
  • Woodlands
  • Parkwood
  • Lavender Hill
  • Kensington
  • Factreton
  • Ocean View
  • Elsies Rivier
  • Delft
  • Bo-Kaap
  • Ottery
  • Egoli informal settlement
  • Mamre

(Source: The South African)

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