AbM Cape Town to hold first ever grassroots workshop on the City’s Master Plan

Abahlali baseMjondolo Press Statement
Friday August 8, 2008 – For Immediate Release

Date: 9th August, 2008 (Saturday)
Time: 14h00 – 16h00
Venue: QQ Revolutionary Community Crèche

QQ Section – Tomorrow, the newly formed AbM Western Cape will be holding a workshop for over 10 informal settlements in Khayelitsha on the City’s ‘Comprehensive Plan’ for Informal Settlements.

Speakers at the workshop will include: Mzwandile Sokupa, Director of Informal Settlements for the City of Cape Town, Helen Macgregor from Development Action Group, Professor Martin Legassick, and others.

The aim of the workshop includes the following:

1. To empower communities in terms of understanding the City’s Master Plan.
2. The way the idea of ‘development’ is being structured with regard to this Plan
3. The way the City tries to control the development of informal settlements by using this ‘Master Plan’

The primary intendant outcome of workshops like this one is to empower Abahlali towards a critical understanding of the City’s approach to urban planning. We would like all abahlali in our settlements to be able to engage with government officials and NGOs on these kinds of issues and democratically come up with informed alternatives to current authoritarian approaches.

Abahlali baseMjondolo is a community-based and community-controlled movement and we do not believe in this so-called ‘stakeholder approach’ to development which seeks to make top-down government policies seem democratic. We are committed towards seeking alternatives with regard to these neoliberal-based policies which affect people living in informal settlements. We believe in the principles of participatory democracy where such alternatives only come from below and to the left.

For more information, please contact 073-256-2036