Angry E Cape community threatens to boycott elections

The community of Emajareni near King William’s Town in the Eastern Cape has threatened to boycott the elections. Residents accuse the municipality of neglecting them.


They were relocated to temporary dwellings more than three years ago with a promise of houses within months. However, that never happened as more than 200 families are feeling forgotten. Their conditions are Aafar from rosy families, some up to seven people, live in these dwellings making do with minimal amenities.

“I sleep here. I take this sofa and push it to the side to open up space for me and my other child. When mom and dad want some private moments, we simply have to turn up the volume on the TV,” says a resident.

Another resident says, “The major issue are these communal toilets and they are always faulty and the waste flows into my house as I stay next to them. The majority of us prefer to just go to the open field than these toilets.”

“They only think of us during elections time, you will see a convoy of cars coming in and we know it is elections time. Suddenly they remember that they dumped us here and we could be useful with our votes,” says another resident.

The Buffalo City metro says steps are being taken to build them houses but there is no firm time-frame.

Buffalo metropolitan municipality deputy Mayor Xola Phakathi says, “We will build houses where people are, we are working with human settlements to sort the matter out. This is an on-going programme we will make funds available for such.”

Residents were relocated because the area they lived in is prone to flooding.


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