STATEMENT ISSUED BY ARCHIE LEWIS, MPL
UDM WESTERN CAPE PROVINCIAL CHAIRPERSON
UDM is dismayed and shocked about the pitiful circumstances of the tornado
victims in Manenberg, Gugulethu and Surrey (Western Cape).
The UDM was pleased when it was finally announced, on 24 May 2000, that the
Mayor of Cape Town Relief Fund Trust (MRTF) would be starting its projects. The
residents of the affected areas should at long last benefit from funds generated
for their relief of this natural disaster.
Instead, they have fallen victim to lack of care, insensitivity and poor
delivery; some of the displaced people (young and old alike) "live like
animals" in rickety wooden houses on a sport field in Phoenix. According to
one of the affected persons, not one of the 270 derelict families had received
The UDM, at the time, expressed its concern at the period of time that elapsed
before the affected people would benefit from the Fund, but was hopeful that it
would be administered in such a way that the affected people truly benefit.
That hope was misplaced! A senior official, responsible for the repair programme,
said that the "Council never promised anything more that basic
shelter"! It is exactly this attitude that keeps the people in apparent
squalor that is only fit for "animals".
Government must take responsibility for South Africa's people! It is simply not
good enough to let them suffer for nearly a year and then tell them, when hope
arrives at last, that they should be thankful for scraps! That is cruel and
unforgivable! Let us not forget that winter in the Western Cape is not something
easily faced without shelter!
The DP/NNP provincial government and the ANC national government cannot dodge
their responsibility. Get your act together and help these people; don't toy
with their lives, they have been struck by enough disaster!
Mr Grant Twigg
UDM Western Cape Provincial Secretary
11 June 2000