Hundreds of Dunoon residents protested outside the Mayor’s Office in Cape Town to protest against the lack of service delivery in the Dunoon area.
A memorandum containing the residents grievances had been handed over to City officials as the mayor was unavailable to receive it.
Spokesperson for the Dunoon protest, Tlhabanelo Diholo, who is a member of the Economic freedom front (EFF), explained that the mayor should have been present at the protest.
One protester said that they cannot afford to feed their families let alone pay the rent for the land in Dunoon.
“I earn R1, 500, but R500 goes to rent, how I am supposed to feed my family and buy my wife clothes with R1000. If you stand behind me I stink, I haven’t had a bath for seven days because we have to sleep in the bush.”
Another resident said that she is concerned about her children since she is unable to afford the current cost of living and is, therefore, unable to adequately provide her children with their basic needs.
“I earn R500 a week and this is not enough for rent and food and to send my children to school. I just want land, I just want my land,” she urged.
Residents feel that the City should provide them with land to build houses, and have asserted their displeasure with what they claim to be the inefficiency of the ward councillor, who they feel has failed them.
“Lababalo Makeleni, our ward councillor, let us down. When it came to getting votes he made all these promises, but now he hasn’t done anything,” says a mother of three.
VOC news contacted Makeleni for comment.
“The time of the protest is quite surprising; the protest started after I reported to the community of an informal settlement that finally they are going to get electricity, water and flushing toilets in the Siyahlala informal settlement,” explained the ward councillor.
“People who call themselves backyard dwellers started calling each other wanting to know what, we as leadership, have done for them because they heard of the improvements that are going to be done in the informal settlements.”
“When they came to my house I asked them to go to the community hall where I met them and explained to them that I called them to a meeting in 2014 so that they can elect their own committee and that we are able to talk to them as a representative of the backyard dwellers, but they did not elect a committee,” Makeleni continued.
“They wanted me to give them permission to occupy the private land and the other land which is a soccer field so could not say yes to them because it would be wrong of me to do so.”
The protesters gave the Cape Town Mayor seven days to respond to their memorandum, with the ultimatum that if no response is provided the land will be forcibly occupied.
VOC (Umarah Hartley)