“There is no by-law just for homeless people, that is absolute nonsense. By-laws are for all of society. We cannot dare to start making exceptions," Plato said. File picture: ANA

Cape Town - Mayor Dan Plato pulled no punches while addressing councillors during a full sitting of Council. He slammed the media and accused them of falling into the hands of the ANC.

“Speaking of playing politics, I see the media has once again fallen for the ANC’s outrage manufacturing machine by trying to paint this City as one that doesn’t care for its homeless, when the complete opposite is actually true – we do more to protect, assist and help our homeless than any other city in this country,” Plato said.

He said the City have laws in the country and it is their duty to uphold those laws, no matter who breaks them.

“There is no by-law just for homeless people, that is absolute nonsense. By-laws are for all of society. We cannot dare to start making exceptions. There is no reason to sleep on the street or to set up illegal structures on sidewalks – there are beds in shelters, they are not full, but some of those who should be making use of the shelters flat out refuse the services available,” he said.

Plato’s comments came after the City landed itself in hot water after the enforcement of by-laws led to the issuing of a 199 fines to homeless people.

“We have pioneered Safe Spaces in this city, we heavily subsidised the many shelters that still have empty beds, we have job creation opportunities for our homeless, skills development programmes, computer training programmes and much more. But we cannot force those who don’t want to make use of these programmes to get help, it is up to them to want to make use of the services we provide,” he said.

Plato also spoke about the MyCiTi bus services that has been suspended on the N2 express. 

“In this city, we follow due process, no matter how challenging or difficult that may be, because that is the only way to ensure good governance and a corruption-free administration. Where we can be better we set ourselves on a course to do that. Like with the N2 MyCiTi contract that is currently being reviewed for the Khayelitsha and Mitchells Plain routes,” he said.

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Cape Argus