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One day in a shack

marzo 5, 2010

Durban. Appointment with Shamita of Abahlali the shack dwellers movement in Durban. We made a long trip to some shacks surrounding Durban. Brief History:

The Abahlali baseMjondolo (Shack Dwellers) Movement began in Durban, South Africa, in early 2005. Although it is overwhelmingly located in and around the large port city of Durban it is, in terms of the numbers of people mobilised, the largest organisation of the militant poor in post-apartheid South Africa. Its originary event was a road blockade organised from the Kennedy Road settlement in protest at the sale, to a local industrialist, of a piece of nearby land long promised by the local municipal councillor to shack dwellers for housing.

Shamita told me that it wouldn’t have been too safe to go to Kennedy Road so we just passed it by with the car. We then went to the shacks in Foreman Road and to her community in Montala Heights. She was born and raised in her mother’s shack, now she “owns” one of her own with her husband and her two siblings.

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