Geo-politics of Reclaiming Agency in the City Centre – District Six, Zonnebloem, Bo-Kaap, Liesbeek River
In apartheid South Africa city space was designed as white space and regarded as “for whites”. Forced removals have a long history that begins at the turn of the nineteenth century when African dockworkers living in the Bo-Kaap area was forcibly removed to Ndabeni, as a result of the outbreak of a plague epidemic. In 1918, with the outbreak of the worldwide influenza epidemic in the last months of the First World War, Ndabeni was razed and the residents were once again moved to the township of Langa, the first township to be established in South Africa.
Communities living in the places that survived apartheid era forced removals (such as Bo-Kaap and Woodstock) are currently being forced out by economic apartheid taking the form of gentrification. Gentrification has been allowed to proceed apace with the result that in the post-apartheid era, apartheid spatial design is being continued and maintained by economic forced removals.
Members of the panel will reflect on this history and address the specific issues related to their area and the broader issues arising from that specificity.
• Tauriq Jenkins (Observatory Civic) will speak on the Liesbeeck River area;
• Mandy Sanger (District Six Museum) will speak on the question of Reclaiming District Six;
• Fowzia Achmat (Bokaap Civic) A representative from the Bo-Kaap Civic Association will speak on economic forced removals in Bo-Kaap;
• Bevil Lucas (Reclaim the City) will speak on the question of spatial justice and affordable housing in the city.