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Police monitor Masiphumelele after protests

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Police were monitoring Masiphumelele, near Fish Hoek, on Monday following community protests over moves to stop people from trying to move onto a tract of unoccupied land.

Activist Rosemary Milbank said Masiphumelele was “dead quiet”.

“There is no drama. The streets were cleaned today,” she said after some residents lit a burning barricade in the area on Sunday.

A protest on the route of Cape Town’s famous cycle tour forced organisers to re-route the race from Masiphumelele last week Sunday. The race was eventually abandoned because of high winds.

Milbank explained that the latest development had its roots in the sale of Erf 5135 to the City of Cape Town 13 years ago.

The land was divided into three sub-sections – with sub-section 1.1 to be graded for housing for people on the City’s housing list, who are not all from Masiphumelele.

Sub-section 1.2, going in the direction of the sea, is a sports field that the City built. Sub-section 1.3 of erf 5131 is the area some people moved on to last weekend.

Milbank said hundreds of people had arrived with spades and poles and started pegging out lots for their shacks.

On Saturday, two half-shacks were erected, but that night, authorities took them down.

“That caused the anger that was shown yesterday,” said Milbank.

She said the Red Ants eviction company had arrived a few days ago, and the mere sight of them made people hysterical.

She said there were no outsiders trying to move on to the land. They were mostly people living in backyards in the area and came from Wetlands – which is the name of the area, not an actual wetland – she said.

Comment from the City of Cape Town was not immediately available.

[Source: News24]
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