CHALLENGES AND RESPONSES

  1. There is a law entitling to free basic services (water, electricity) but it is not applying in the inner city buildings: e.g. unless there is a city account, people cannot get access to a free contingent of water
  2. Cut offs of water and electricity are used to prepare the ground for evictions ð ICRC and CALS Campaign on Water
  3. Johannesburg’s own police force, Metro Police, accompanies cutting off the electricity of buildings and issues tickets (1,500 Rand) to each individual in the building; it is unknown where this money goes to! ð ICRC prepares a picketing “stop electricity cut-offs!” in front of the office of city power to get the authority to a round table
  4. The criminalisation of structural issues ð on June 22, 2008, ICRC marched to Metro Police: “control traffic instead of issuing tickets to residents of housing blocks!”
  5. “Owners” (slumlords) overcharge tenants without paying levies to the city and take advantage of the ineffectiveness of the Rental Housing Tribunals
  6. Evictions prepare further rent increases in the inner city
  7. The City of Johannesburg has no plan how to respond to housing needs of poor residents: the ever solution of relocating poor residents to the outskirts (“regeneration”) enforces the creation of new slums
  8. The so called “Inner City Regeneration” strengthens the upward spiral of the real estate market: as an example, a flat that cost 70,000 Rand two years ago, easily costs 300,000 Rand today (> 400%)
  9. Although there might be “no land” in the inner city, there are many empty buildings – the City of Johannesburg needs to start re-thinking their approach; poor people need inner city location
  10. The so-called poor people’s housing is usually not for the very poor
  11. Community residential units are the new city program: keeping costs low with communal infrastructure which ignores that most people do not want to live in a larger community and share facilities.

Inner City Resource Centre