Cape Town residents protest against 'gateway to hell'

Residents of state-subsidised housing in Cape Town are to march to Parliament on Tuesday, protesting against the poor quality of their homes, the Anti-Eviction Campaign said.


Residents have nicknamed the N2 Gateway housing project the “gateway to hell” and were planning to march to Parliament to protest directly to Housing Minister Lindiwe Sisulu. Residents of Hanover Park, Khayelitsha and Zille Rain Heights were expected to join the march in solidarity.


“The residents have faced the same problems as other poor, black residents who move into low-cost housing, namely that within months ... major defects show up in their flats or houses.


“These include huge cracks in walls, leaking roofs to the extent that parents ... have had to send their children to live with extended family members. There was also a problem in September 2006 that anybody’s keys could open anyone else’s flats. They still have not changed the locks to this day,” residents said.


About 100 residents have submitted grievances—including photographs of faults—to the Rental Housing Tribunal, but in vain.


“On top of this the flats are tiny and the rent is extremely high for a rotten potato,” said Luthando Ndabambi, chairperson of the residents’ housing committee, which is supported by the Anti-Eviction Campaign.


The committee has vowed to support the residents of the Joe Slovo informal settlement in Langa who they said were forcibly removed to make way for the N2 Gateway project.


The march is scheduled to start at noon at Kaisersgracht, Cape Town.—Sapa

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