‘Minstrel marches are annoying us’

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Copy of ca p10 Golden Dixies done CAPE ARGUS Bo-Kaap residents have complained about minstrels who continue to make a noise in the area at night. Picture: David Ritchie

Cape Town -

Some residents of the Bo-Kaap are fed up with the minstrels who continue to march through the neighbourhood at all hours of the night.

Bo-Kaap mosques, the Schotsche Kloof Ratepayers Association and disgruntled residents claim that “minstrels are digging a grave for themselves” in the area.

Residents claim that the troupes have shown no respect to residents by taking part in illegal marches.

The area has traditionally been home to Muslims. Many have complained that the all-night revelry in the area disturbs their Fajr (morning) prayers.

Ratepayers’ association secretary Ismael Hartley, a resident of Wale Street for more than 60 years, said minstrels had held the city hostage for the past two years.

“My view is part of this greater community. The city has been held hostage by the minstrels and this will continue for the next few weeks. We are a peaceful community and they walk all over us.

“They have no regard for the elderly, the sick and those who come home from a long day’s work.”

Minstrels took to the streets of the Bo-Kaap this weekend, some showing off the trophies they had won at a competition held at the Athlone Stadium earlier in the day.

Five Golden Arrow buses transported troupes with a crowd of spectators that had gathered in Bo-Kaap from 8pm on Saturday.

The spectators, mainly from all over the Cape Flats, said they had no problem with the minstrels.

Melvyn Matthews, chairman of the Kaapse Klopse Karnival Association, said: “The residents of the Bo-Kaap need to realise that the minstrels are a cultural institution.”

Responding to the allegations of illegal marches, the mayoral committee member for tourism, events and marketing, Grant Pascoe said: “Troupes are required to inform the city through a formal application as this is considered a discreet event.

Pascoe urged communities to lodge a complaintwith the city in the event of an illegal march. “

Please lodge a complaint with the city’s law enforcement department on 021 596 1999.”

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Cape Argus

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