Durban residents, dumped for 2010 world cup, protest

They were told in 2009 their temporary accommodation was only for six months

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Zanele Shozi lives in this one-room container home with 14 family members. She was moved here in 2009 to make way for the FIFA World Cup. Photos: Tsoanelo Sefoloko.

  • In 2009 more than 600 families were moved to Kwadabeka, north-west of Durban, in preparation for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
  • They have been there ever since.
  • They live in overcrowded and unsanitary conditions with more than 600 households sharing two toilets and two showers.
  • They have staged protests but say to date they have been ignored.

Last week residents of Kwadabeka, north-west of Durban, blocked Dumisani Makhaye highway in the early hours of Friday, demanding to speak to Mayor Mxolisi Kaunda.

They said they have been waiting two weeks for the eThekwini Municipality to report back to them after their previous protest about their housing situation in October.

In 2009, more than 600 families were moved nine kilometres to a transit camp to make way for a training ground for international clubs near Sugar Ray Xulu Stadium in Clermont in preparation for the 2010 FIFA World Cup.

They were told the move would only be for six months.

“My daughter was seven years old when we arrived here. Now she is 21,” says Menzi Dlamini, whose original mud house was demolished in 2009.

“There is absolutely no privacy,” says Dlamini.

Resident Mblai Ngcobo said in all the 13 years they’ve lived there, none of the various mayors had addressed them. “It seems as if the government has forgotten about us,” said Ngcobo.

Most of the homes have broken windows. People have used sandbags to prevent flooding and erosion under their structures.

There are 609 households sharing two urinals, two flush toilets (the others are broken) and two showers set up in a shipping container. Most people wash themselves in their homes.

Thembani Zungu, who is in charge of cleaning the toilets, says for years she has been reporting to the municipality that most of the toilets are broken.

Thendeka Khumalo says she was four when she arrived and she is now 18 and in grade 12. She says there is no library in the vicinity where she can study in peace. She shares a room with seven people.

The families complain they have been forbidden from extending their structures although they have been living there for more than a decade and their families are growing.

eThekwini Municipality spokesperson Gugu Sisilana said the residents will be relocated once a proposed development, still in the planning stages, is completed.

The two urinals and two showers that over 600 families have to share.

TOPICS:  Housing

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