Articles by Daneel Knoetze

The ugly reality of eviction

Whether legal or illegal, evicting people from their makeshift homes is an ugly, violent and brutal business. GroundUp photographer and journalist, Masixole Feni and Daneel Knoetze, were at the Marikana settlement, Philippi East, Cape Town, on a calm morning on 11 August 2014, and then the eviction teams arrived. By midday there was chaos, stones were thrown and the police were firing back with rubber bullets.

Daneel Knoetze and Masixole Feni - 12 August 2014

Cops beat and humiliate evicted shackdwellers in Philippi East

In yet another crackdown on shackdwellers in Philippi East’s “Marikana” settlement, dozens of shacks were demolished by the City of Cape Town's Anti-Land Invasion Unit on 11 August. Police providing back-up and support, humiliated, assaulted and jeered at residents as they were evicted.

Daneel Knoetze - 11 August 2014

Police give Lwandle inquiry the “run around”

Lwandle inquiry chair Denzil Potgieter on 8 August slammed the police for withholding video footage and key documents relating to evictions at the informal settlement in June. He accused the police of giving the inquiry secretariat the “run around” during its numerous attempts to access the footage.

Daneel Knoetze - 8 August 2014

Expropriate the suburbs, say activists

Tracts of private suburban land will have to be expropriated by the state at below market value if spatial apartheid in South African cities is to be reversed. The property clause in the Constitution can be interpreted in a revolutionary manner to allow for this. Expropriated land, subsidised by existing government property, should be used to provide housing for shackdwellers from the city fringe, so that informal settlements can be less dense and upgraded. These were the concluding opinions in a roundtable discussion on the Urban Land Question in the Cape Town CBD on 7 August.

Daneel Knoetze - 8 August 2014

SA shackdwellers protest against evictions in Austria

On 6 August, shackdweller movement Abahlali baseMjondolo (AbM) marched on the the Austrian honourary consul in Durban to protest the eviction of squatting “comrades” under way in Vienna. This, in reciprocation of months of solidarity and support from people and organisations based in Europe and the United States for AbM.

Daneel Knoetze - 6 August 2014

Lifelong farm tenants evicted

In temperatures near freezing, the Joostenberg family were left with little option but to spend the night amongst their possessions on the side of the road. For a second time, they were evicted from their home by a sheriff of the court, their possessions carried out and transported off the farm where the family has lived for 50 years, and dumped next to the R318 outside Montagu.

Daneel Knoetze - 6 August 2014

Dumping on the poor in Siqalo

Rubble dumping on the fringe of Siqalo informal settlement has forced hundreds of shackdwellers to evacuate their homes. Boulders have rolled into shacks; dumping has prevented winter rains from draining, leaving dozens of households flooded and abandoned. Yet the dumping carries on unchecked.

Daneel Knoetze - 5 August 2014

Parking marshals, unpaid for months, march on government

Around sixty of the CBD's parking marshals, who to have been "on strike" since October last year, marched on Western Cape Premier Helen Zille's offices at the provincial legislature yesterday.

Daneel Knoetze - 31 July 2014

Robertson Abattoir was “hell”

The case of 39 Robertson Abattoir workers who say they were dismissed for complaining about 18-hour days was back in court today after a 20 month delay.

Daneel Knoetze - 29 July 2014

“Homophobic police attack” to be investigated

The Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID) this morning confirmed that it is investigating claims of police officers dragging a gay Congolese man to a back room of Claremont police station and beating him with metal poles.

Daneel Knoetze - 28 July 2014

Montagu family on brink of losing home

Darkness falls on the Koo valley. Andries Joostenberg, 63, and his son hang up their axes, stack the last logs of cut wood and trudge indoors. The temperature drops. In the farm cottage's kitchen a family huddles in semi-darkness around a wood stove. The electricity has been cut, so too the water: final instalments in a siege designed to drive Andries off the land.

Daneel Knoetze - 25 July 2014

Magistrate says charges stand against sanitation activists

The trial of 21 Social Justice Coalition (SJC) members continued in the Cape Town Magistrates' Court today. The group are charged with unlawfully attending and convening a protest in September last year.

Daneel Knoetze - 24 July 2014

Cape Town’s protest permit system not supported by law, says City employee

The City of Cape Town's policy that requires groups, marchers and protesters to apply for a gathering permit is not supported by law. This was a concession made by one of the City's own officials, Noel da Silva, who is employed to consider such applications and to grant permits.

Daneel Knoetze - 23 July 2014

HRC: Cape Town’s chemical toilets violate human rights

The Human Rights Commission (HRC) has found that the City of Cape Town's roll out of chemical toilets unfairly discriminates against “black African” people, and violates the rights to basic sanitation and dignity of informal settlement residents.

Daneel Knoetze - 16 July 2014

Death with dignity not only a debate for developed countries

Desmond Tutu's support for assisted dying made headlines across the world this week, and brought the debate into the mainstream in South Africa.

Daneel Knoetze - 15 July 2014