In District Six officers came with full force. So many personnel to remove less than 15 homeless people.
It looked like some major operation. And the number of Cape Town Central Improvement District CCID officers to maintain safety was an embarrassment. At that particular spot, most people living there are gay or transgender. So why all the security? Are the homeless that hostile? Dangerous? I will tell you what we are: fed-up. Like gatvol.
Are these people not aware that our "safe" space will only be in operation after around March/April?
It is not what they do, but how it gets done. So they load people’s possessions on a truck and go dump it. The people start all over. And it goes on and on and on. It is more complex than returning people home or to a shelter.
Homeless people are not some sort of wild animal. We have a couple of what I like to call chiefs abusing their powers. They think they are above the law. And up to now, very few people out there report these issues. That was yesterday. We will put an end to it all.
The water fountain at the toilets in Green Point have been completely removed. So no water for us in that area. Oh well, at least we have bicycle lanes, hey! The city council and social services are failing us. The old ways are not applicable anymore. It is stale. Not in line with the here and now at all.
And please, why spend thousands on a campaign asking people not to give money directly to the homeless. Just how much money do people dish out? Less than you think dear reader. But the way they carry on it sounds like it’s hundreds of rands.
People today mostly use debit cards or SnapScan. And go do your homework. In some European and American cities, homelessness is far worse than here in Cape Town.
So we are not as intimidating as some people say. I think at times it is the language barrier. Some people don’t understand each other during conversations.
Shelters also may not feed people on the outside. Show me where in our constitution does it say that. Is it one of the newly created by-laws?
The politicians in our city have to worry about their survival. So a bunch of people under a bridge is not a priority. But let’s just chase them away. Give the homeless some slack.
Don’t pick on us. We know we are a constant reminder of how the system has been messed up over the years.
The authorities still don’t have a clear way forward. The different departments can't even work collectively on issues regarding the homeless.
* Danny Oosthuizen is the #TheDignityProject ambassador. In his weekly daily column for the Cape
* The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Newspapers.