South African territory: Statement by Abahlali baseMjondolo about the attempts by the KZN Department of Social Development to evict eNduduzweni disabled residents.
Submitted to Enough is Enough.
Note: Enough is Enough is not organizing any of these events, we are publishing this text for people across the US and Europe to be able to see what is going on and for documentation only.
Today We Go to Court to Stop the Eviction of Disabled Residents
Today the eNduduzweni branch of Abahlali baseMjondolo goes to Durban High Court as the eThekwini Municipality and KZN Department of Social Development intensified its war on the blind and physical challenged residents in the eNduduzweni Centre for the Disabled in uMlazi.
At the same time the eThekwini Municipality’s Land Invasion Unit is intensifying its was on the eKhenana land occupation in uMkhumbane.
For a long time now the KZN Department of Social Development has tried to evict the eNduduzweni residents who have lived at the Centre for the Disabled for many years. They have failed with all their tricks, including saying that they want to renovate the home and therefore residents must return back to rural dumping areas where there are no jobs or prospect of economic livelihood, and no facilities for people in wheelchairs or people who are blind. They have been harassing residents, stealing from them, cutting services and lying to them. They have even tried to evict them through court but failed.
The residents are living in a home that was given to them many years ago. After the government took over the home they were given a grant. But then the grant was stopped they were given stipends as they work on handwork as part of skills development projects. They have now been told that they will no longer receive stipends and that instead they will receive cooked food. The residents have rejected the decision to replace the stiped with food citing that they have families to support back home, so feeding them like animals does not give them dignity means that they are unable to support their families.
While comrades were waiting for the Department of Social Development to consult with them they sent eThekwini municipal officials to cut electricity as way of punishing them and forcefully drive them out of home.
The KZN Department of Social Development has failed to engage the residents honestly and respectfully. The dignity of the residents is not respected.
The eNduduzweni branch of has had to go to court after the eThekwini municipality cut off their electricity.
We are pleased that the Legal Resource Centre is taking the eThekwini Municipality to Durban High Court to demand re-electrification. The states continue to fail to treat people with respect and dignity.
Abahlali will come out in their numbers to support our comrades against indignity and injustices.
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