Category Archives: transit camps

The Mercury: R31m ‘insult’ has residents fuming

Sihle Manda, The Mercury

Durban – Large families crammed into a controversial temporary housing project in Durban have reacted with disbelief that their tiny 2m x 2m shacks cost R35 000 each, describing living conditions there as “inhumane”.

Speaking to The Mercury at the weekend, several residents at the Kennedy Road informal settlement said the price tag on their homes was “a lie” and an insult.

The city built the transit camp last year after hundreds of shacks were gutted in a fire that left thousands homeless. Continue reading

Mercury: Durban’s R35 000 shack shame

Sihle Manda, The Mercury

Durban – A damning forensic investigation has found that city officials fraudulently colluded with bidders who eventually spent about R35 000 per shoddy 2m x 2m room in a 700-unit temporary housing project.

The price of the unit is roughly R10 000 less than what it would have cost the city to build a fully fledged low-cost house. It would have cost the city about R7 000 to buy a similar-sized wendy house and from R4 000 to R6 000 to buy a corrugated iron zozo hut. Continue reading

M&G: Costly sports events ruin the poor, again

Kwanele Sosibo, Mail & Guardian 

In the years preceding the Fifa 2010 World Cup, Durban residents living in informal settlements adjacent to road projects and sporting facilities were removed with the promise of better accommodation.

Fast forward to 2015, and the same thing is going to happen again. With the Commonwealth Games scheduled for 2022, members of shack-dwellers’ movement Abahlali base-Mjondolo, originating in Durban, are saying that the decision to make parts of the Cornubia development a Commonwealth Games village happened without consulting the people expecting that housing. Continue reading

The Con: Under Siege in Clermont

Under Siege in Clermont

Fred Kockott, Nomfundo Xolo and Slindile Jiyane

A ministerial housing project has gone awry in Clermont, Durban. Fifteen families who refuse to destroy their homes and move into a transit camp to make way for planned developments are under siege. Among families resisting relocation are the Mlandus. Arsonists attempted to petrol-bomb their home early Friday morning, but only a rock and the burning rag – the fuse of the “bomb” – penetrated through the windows. The bottle dropped outside.

“I was awoken around 2am by my daughter’s loud scream – ‘Vukani ma, nibaleke!’ (Wake up, ma. We must run),” said Nompumelelo Mlandu. “I saw a flame outside my window. I rushed to grab my grandson and got out the house…  I am still shaken, but in greater fear of what’s to come next,” said Mlandu. “If something is not done soon, we are all going to die burning in our sleep.”

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Kennedy Road Burns Once Again

Sunday, 03 November 2013

Abahlali baseMjondolo Press Statement

Kennedy Road Burns Once Again

On Tuesday the Isipingo Transit Camp was flooded once again. It is built on a flood plain and there is no drainage and so there are regular floods. The residents took to the streets and organised a road blockade in protest at the living conditions that have been forced on them against their will.

Our movement has rejected transit camps from the first moment that that they appeared and we have constantly called for them to abolished and for all people that have been forced into these inhuman places to be provided with decent housing as a matter of urgency. The municipality has now announced that they will not build any more transit camps and they have promised to house people in transit camps. Their decision to stop building transit camps is a victory that comes directly from our struggle. We welcome this victory but we do not see clear plans to provide decent housing to the 10 000 people who have been sentenced to the transit camps. Therefore our struggle against the transit camps continues and it will continue until every person forced into a transit camp has access to decent housing.

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