War on Want calls for funds for November 29 trial
Urgent: Abahlali and War on Want appeals to you to help us raise money for the Kennedy 12 court case
“The attacks to the informal settlement in Kennedy Rd, Durban, on the 26-27 of September 2009, left two dead, over 30 shacks where looted and destroyed and families where forced to leave with nothing. Leaders of Abahlali baseMjondolo were target and are still in hiding, fearing for their lives.
The attacks were condemned by international organizations such as Amnesty International. Articles on national and international media shed light on the events (see list below). And yet, the victims are still suffering and being neglected by South African government.
Twelve men were arrested, whom witness of the attacks claim were the ones being attacked, not the opposite. The charges? Public violence, assault and murder. Five of these men stayed in prison for 8 months, when they received bail in July. For months they suffered in prison, with constant trial postponements and no evidence being presented against them. As Jeff Guy rightly wrote on The Mercury “Justice delayed and denied for 12 Kennedy Road accused”
For a few months, the Kennedy 12 had the support of some organizations that provided with the funds to pay for lawyers, aid the families of the prisoners and the ones on bail. Unfortunately, the length of the case overwhelmed the funds provided. We currently have a set date for the trial, 29th of November 2010, but Abahlali is at this point left with no funds to pay for lawyers, or support the families.
War on Want is making an emergency appeal on behalf of Abahlali. Justice has been denied to the Kennedy 12 and all the other Kennedy Rd victims are still displaced by the violence. 100% of all the money donated will go straight to Abahlali and their amazing work. Abahlali will be sent the names of everyone who contributes unless you would prefer to remain anonymous.
To donate from outside South Africa, click here (100% of the donation will be sent by War on Want to Abahlali)
To donate directly to Abahlali baseMjondolo, you can send a bank transfer to:
Abahlali baseMjondolo Movement
Bank: First National Bank
Acc no: 62218884577
Branch: Umgeni Junction
Branch Code: 00200913
Swift Code: firnzajj759
(please inform Abahlali of your donation at abahlalibasemjondolo [at] telkomsa.net)
To spread the word, please forward this appeal to your friends and networks. You can post the appeal link in your blog, facebook, twitter, anywhere. At the bottom of this email, you’ll find some links with articles on this case, from a variety of national and international newspaper, and many other organizations.
For more information about the Kennedy 12 case, please contact the Abahlali Office at +27-31-304-6420.
Thank you for your support.
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Information and links about the Kennedy 12 court case:
* Scholar article by Kerry Chance: ‘The Work of Violence: a timeline of armed attacks at Kennedy Road’: http://sds.ukzn.ac.za/default.php?3,6,684,4,0
* Abahlali Mjondolo press releases: ‘Justice Delayed is Justice Denied’: http://abahlali.org/node/6124
* ‘Detention Without Trial or Evidence of Wrongdoing Continues for five of the Kennedy 12′: http://abahlali.org/node/6672
* ‘At Court for the Kennedy 13 on 27 November 2009: 7 Released on Bail, 1 Released All Charges Dropped, 5 Remain in Custody’: http://abahlali.org/node/6216
* Letter of concern: Kennedy Road Attacks (In 24 hours – after the attack- we collected 103 signatures of academics, professionals, students, activists, members of civil society organisations, authors based in South Africa and abroad): http://abahlali.org/node/5782
* Statement on the Anniversary of the Attack on Abahlali baseMjondolo: http://www.abahlali.org/node/7324
* From Amnesty International: “South Africa: Failure to conduct impartial investigation into Kennedy Road violence is leading to further human rights abuses”: http://www.amnesty.org/en/library/asset/AFR53/011/2009/en/53fce922-d49e-4537-b3bb-84060cf84c85/afr530112009en.html
Newspaper articles in South Africa:
* Business Day, by Franny Rabkin, ‘Amnesty backs calls for Kennedy Road violence probe’: http://www.businessday.co.za/articles/Content.aspx?id=89957
* Mail & Guardian, by Kenichi Serino http://www.mg.co.za/article/2010-05-27-amnesty-report-says-something-rotten-in-state-of-south-africa
* Politics web, by Paul Trewhela, ‘Amnesty International condemns Human Rights abuse of Abahlali members’:http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71619?oid=154870&sn=Detail
Newspaper articles from people abroad:
* The Daily News, by Sarah Cooper-Knock, ‘Symbol of hope silenced’: http://www.dailynews.co.za/index.php?fArticleId=5243863
* Jornal do Brasil, by Rodrigo de Almeida, ‘De como não remover favelas’: http://www.jblog.com.br/politica.php?itemid=1637
Other supporting statements of organizations:
* Witness, by Sharlene Packree, ‘Amnesty blasts SA government’: http://www.witness.co.za/index.php?showcontent&global[_id]=33005
* LCAP, ‘Our eyes are on Durban, but not for the World Cup’: http://www.lcap.org.uk/?p=319
* Diakonia Council of Churches , by Revd Roger Scholtz, ‘When liberators become oppressors’: http://abahlali.org/node/6267
* Diakonia Council of Churches , by Bishop Michael Vorster, ‘Current powers threatened by the power of the poor’: http://abahlali.org/node/6134
* Clandestino: http://clandestino.carta.org/2010/05/14/welcome-abahlali-tuesday-18-press-conference/
Video on the attacks: