Saturday, July 20, 2013
Portaloo protests target court
Cape Town - About 100 people protesting against portable toilets were undeterred by the cold and rain on Friday, as they marched from Cape Town station to the Western Cape High Court to hand over a four-page memorandum.
The marchers said they were also there to voice their unhappiness over the fact that seven of their leaders were being held in custody, without a chance of bail.
Earlier this month seven men, Andile Lili, Loyiso Nkohla, Yanga Njingwana, Ben Dyani, Jaji Diniso, Bongile Zanazo and Thembela Mabanjwa, were denied bail by the Bellville Magistrate’s Court. The court deemed that they were likely to repeat the offence after they were arrested for throwing faeces around Cape Town International Airport.
The marchers sang songs laden with expletives directed at Premier Helen Zille and magistrate Jannie Kotze, who made the bail ruling, as they made their way through the city centre.
The group stopped en route at the provincial government offices, where faeces had also been strewn last month, and were addressed by leaders over a loudspeaker.
“Madam, we’ve come back to your building, you racist. You’re going to feel our wrath and we will not be intimidated by you at all. Do you think we’re mad for marching in the rain?” declared Sithembele Majova, spokesman for the group, who call themselves the Cape Town informal settlements task team.
He continued for some minutes, before the group moved on to the High Court.
The police had cordoned off the street, but the protesters broke the tapes and threatened to barge in.
Outside the court, Mongami Mbhele, who said he was the chairman of the task team, urged Zille and Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille to visit areas where the bucket system was in use.
“After this, we’re going cause trouble if they don’t attend to our needs immediately. From now on, we’re not going to shy away from trouble,” Mbhele said.
After protesting outside the court for more than two hours, the group made their way back to the station.