'Today's march in CT CBD is illegal'

Informal settlement activists intend marching in the Cape Town CBD today.

FILE: Damage to an Adderley Street shop front after protesters demonstrated in in the Cape Town CBD on 30 October 2013. Picture: Aletta Gardner/EWN

CAPE TOWN - The City of Cape Town says if a march by informal settlement activists goes ahead today, it will be illegal.

The city has turned down an application by Ses'khona Peoples Rights Movement, which wants to stage a protest in the city centre citing safety concerns.

The city's Priya Reddy said, "If an illegal march goes ahead it is the responsibility of the police to ensure that those who are not taking part in an illegal march are kept safe."

She added that metro police will also be called in for additional support should the march go ahead.

The city centre could come to a virtual standstill if the march goes ahead.

The same activists were behind two marches in the CBD late last year which became so chaotic that shops were looted, informal traders lost their goods and city property was damaged.

Leaders of the group include axed ANC members Loyiso Nkohla and Andile Lili who launched a verbal attack on Western Cape Premier Helen Zille at a media briefing on Tuesday.

Lili says they will forge ahead with a march for land, housing and proper sanitation, even if it does not get the green light from the City of Cape Town.

"If there's failure to give us the land, obviously we're going to sleep in town."

The activists have also threatened to embark on a mass hunger strike if their demands are not taken seriously.