MARIKANA LAND: CITY OF CAPE TOWN CAN NO LONGER DENY RESIDENTS BASIC SERVICES

GOOD Statement by Chad Davids,
GOOD Secretary-General & Member of Parliament

9 July 2024

The City of Cape Town must urgently start with the provision of basic services to residents of Marikana informal settlement following years of delays and excuses.

A landmark ruling in 2017 instructed the City to negotiate with the owners to purchase the land in order to provide much-needed services such as electricity. Now, seven years later, the city finally bought the property in Phillipi East.

While this is a welcome development, GOOD strongly condemns the City for taking this long to finalise the acquisition of the land. It clearly demonstrates unwillingness and a lack of commitment on the part of the City to secure the tenure for the residents of Marikana and to provide these residents with the mere basics.

A visit to the informal settlement will show countless illegal electricity connections that present serious risks for people who are in need. Access to electricity in the 21st century should be considered a basic human need.

It is also unacceptable that now, seven years later, the City wants to start planning for something they knew was their legal duty in 2017. The City would be wise to speed up this process and prioritise decent basic services – electricity, water and sanitation – for this community.

This will require them to urgently engage with the community about the plans to upgrade the informal settlement, to ensure it is done in an inclusive and effective manner.

The residents simply cannot afford further delays. They have suffered for too long in a province that is supposed to be the best-run, in a City that boasts about its commitment to quality service delivery and governance.

Media Enquiries:

Janke Tolmay, GOOD Media Manager

Cell: 073 367 1223

Email: janke@forgood.org.za

Brett Herron, GOOD Secretary-General

Cell: 082 518 3264

Email: bretth@forgood.org.za