Jukskei River dwellers say their plight is being ignored


Citizen 20/1/06

Jukskei River dwellers say their plight is being ignored


ALEXANDRA – Setjwetla squatter camp resident, Release Matladi, 28, feels
authorities are ignoring the squatters’ plight.

Her home was spared when the bank of the Jukskei River collapsed last week
but the danger is far from over. She has erected a makeshift fence to keep
her children from falling over the edge onto what remains of her neighbour’s
house at the bottom of the ravine.
Shouts rang out when the bank started to collapse and shacks toppled over,
spilling their contents into the river.

No one was injured but eight families lost their homes.

Eric Simango was one of those who lost everything he owns. Like many others
he was not at home at the time.

He came back to the site on Monday to save what he could. “I don’t know what
I am going to do,” he said.

His feelings were echoed by Matladi says “taps don’t have water, we don’t
have clean toilets and the river is making our children sick. We don’t have
dustbins so we throw rubbish into the river. We simply don’t have any other

The residents’ complaints angered Julian Baskin, director of the Alex
Renewal Project.
“Residents were evacuated and despite what residents claim, the shacks in
danger did not fall into the river, they were demolished.

“Emergency workers worked through the night to make sure no one fell in,” he
He also strongly denied the shortage of clean water.