Homeless people at the Culemborg bridge last night. Armand Hough African News Agency (ANA)
Homeless people at the Culemborg bridge last night. Armand Hough African News Agency (ANA)

Homeless people 'dumped' under a bridge in Cape Town

By Bulelwa Payi Time of article published May 23, 2020

Share this article:

Cape Town - A large group of homeless people spent another night under a bridge in Culemborg after they were allegedly “dumped” there on Thursday evening.

Human rights activist and chairperson of Xarra Restorative Justice Forum Tauriq Jenkins said conditions under the bridge were “inhumane”.

Jenkins, who visited the Culemborg site, said the group of more than 170 were brought to the site by law enforcement vehicles from the Strandfontein temporary shelter which was closed down on May 21.

The City plans to accommodate the homeless but said the site would only be ready on May 31.

Jenkins urged mayco member for community services Zahid Badroodien to visit the site and address the group regarding their future.

“Since Thursday night they had no water, food or access to support services. They have expressed their concerns that they were not being taken to a quarantine site as most of them had shared a tent with the person who later tested positive.

“They want to be tested for Covid-19 and have appealed to the private sector to help them as they did not trust that they would be,” he said.

In a statement released yesterday, Badroodien said the last homeless people at the Strandfontein temporary shelter were moved offsite on Thursday afternoon, which signalled the formal decommissioning of the site. He said 61 returned to the street; 31 were placed in quarantine, 356 were placed in alternative shelters and 13 reintegrated into their communities.

“There have been numerous challenges with some of the occupants on site refusing to access the quarantine facilities that was prepared for them, notwithstanding the fact that provision had been made for all close contacts to be quarantined at an appropriate facility. The remaining individuals at the site were to be screened daily. These efforts were once again prevented and obstructed by a number of individuals associated with the Homeless Action Committee,” Badroodien said.

He dismissed allegations that the City had dumped the homeless under a bridge.

He said efforts would be made to assist the homeless people in question.

Weekend Argus

Share this article: