De Lille: Plans in place to move people back to Imizamo Yethu

Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille says plans are in place to start moving some people left destitute by a shack fire back into Imizamo Yethu.

Imizamo Yethu residents sing and dance while police try to calm the situation. Picture: Monique Mortlock/EWN

CAPE TOWN - Cape Town Mayor Patricia de Lille says plans are in place to start moving some people left destitute by a shack fire back into Imizamo Yethu.

De Lille on Monday addressed angry residents who took to the streets for three days to vent their frustration at the slow pace of rebuilding the community, following a deadly fire in March.

The mayor says that acts of criminality during the demonstrations have affected the development process.

“The criminals of yesterday have destroyed the civil engineering company’s equipment and this will delay the project even further. If the violence continues, the city will have no option but to withdraw from there.”

A resident who has been living at the temporary relocation area says that the living conditions there are appalling.

Asanda Busakwe, aged 27, and her mother were displaced by the fire in March and now live in a tiny one-room metal shack.

“When it rains water comes into the house. We need to buy paraffin because there’s no electricity. We don’t always have money to buy paraffin. Sometimes I take a cold bath because here is no electricity.”

Riot police and law enforcement officers were on scene on Monday, while stun grenades and rubber bullets were fired at demonstrators during a tense standoff with police.

At least four people have been arrested following the violent demonstrations.

(Edited by Shimoney Regter)