Open Letter to Tokyo Sexwale from Abahlali baseMjondolo of the Western Cape


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Email: office admin: 073 2562 936/ 078 760 5246

To: National Department of Human Settlements
Private Bag X 644

Attention: The Minister of Human Settlement Mr. Tokyo Sexwale

* Abahlali baseMjondolo of the Western Cape is a shack dwellers movement which was formed early 2008 by residents of QQ informal settlement at Cape Town, Khayelitsha, and currently the movement is an affiliate of more than 15 informal settlement which are based at Khayelitsha and Somerset West.

* Abahlali baseMjondolo is a not political party and it does not affiliate or favour any political party through out the country. The organization is meant to articulate the conditions in which people are living under off and to campaign for accessing well located land and housing for the poor, including service delivery for people living within informal settlement.

* The movement has noted with great concerned the conditions in which our people are living under off which are very appalling, it is shocking and disappointing to find that 15 years after the democracy our people are still living without access to adequate toilets, clean water and electricity.

* And it is sad to see people continuing dying everyday in shack fires that affect people residing in informal settlement where people does not have electricity at all and does not even know if when their shacks will be electrified and it is painful to continue seeing our people being the victims of floods during winter rains and with no relevant intervention from both local and provincial government including the National Government.

* Abahlali baseMjondolo of the Western Cape it finds it completely unacceptable for people to continue living under these conditions and with no clear direction and answers as to when they will get proper houses, electricity, water and sanitation.

And we therefore call upon you to:

1. Tell us if by when the National Department of Human Settlement will eradicate the informal settlements through out the country.

2. To declare all the dwellers of informal settlement as legal occupiers of the land that they are currently occupying

3. To upgrade all the informal settlement without any forced evictions and relocations should be used as the last resort and all affected people must be properly consulted and engaged with meaningfully.

4. By when the bucket system will be phased out,

5. And we call upon you to expropriate all the land which does not produce it’s social value within cities including but not limited to unused hotels, hospitals, schools churches, governmental buildings, flats and etc to house the poor

Abahlali baseMjondolo of the Western Cape has made a serious call of ‘a week of informal settlement strike’ and our alliance partners within Poor Peoples Alliance (which is Abahlali baseMjondolo DBN, Landless Peoples Movement Johannesburg, Rural Network KZN and Anti eviction campaign Western Cape are supporting the call and a Conference for democratic left (which is a affiliates of more than 10 community based organization and independent unions) and Jubilee South Africa are also supporting this call

We will await for your response within a period of 14 days, and should we not hear anything from you within this period we will be left with no choice but to announce the date of a week of informal settlement strike which will result to a complete stand still of the country’s production.

While waiting for your response we will continue engaging with progressive community groups, unions, students movements, none governmental organization and churches to support the call.

On behalf of ABM WC

Mzonke Poni

ABM WC Chairperson or 073 2562 036