glparramatta glparramatta at
Wed Sep 26 17:20:26 MDT 2001

Date: Wed, 26 Sep 2001 19:05:35 +0200


AIDC offices, 3rd floor, COSATU House, Braamfontein,
Johannesburg, 2017

Lucien van der Walt/ APF Media Committee/ 083-572-8436

[For comment from the scene, call Campaign Co-ordinator Faizel Brown
on 082-545-7883]



The Anti-Privatisation Forum condemns the shooting of 15 people, and
the arrest of 8, by the police in Tafelsig, Cape Town. We extend our
condolences to the victims of this police brutality, and to their
families and friends.

The violence began when a massive police presence was deployed to
enforce water cut-offs to 1800 households in Tafelsig. The heavily
armed police arrived in more than 100 vehicles, and carried live
ammunition, as well as teargas and rubber bullets.

As a crowd gathered, police began to fire into the crowd.  Victims
include a 5 year old child who was shot in the back.

The APF believes these brutal attacks are unjustified and

We oppose water cut-offs and electricity cut-offs, as these violate
basic human rights to access the means of life.

Cut-offs by local municipalities are driven by the ANC government's
neo-liberal programme, GEAR, and government's general drive to
privatise all social services in South Africa.

This process of neo-liberal restructuring has seen, on the one hand,
massive tax cuts and rising profits and salaries for the wealthy
political; and business elite. At the same time, unemployment and
crime have skyrocketed, tens of thousands of working class households
in poor communities, have faced wave after wave of evictions, cut-offs
and attachments.

Both the DA and the ANC agree on the fundamentals of GEAR, arguing
that it will create jobs and benefit the poor. Likewise both parties
agree on the need to cut tax to the rich, whilst slashing funds to
social services and local government.

The result: the gap between rich and poor is widening, and the new
South Africa is being built on a chasm of inequality that, according
to UN data, exceeds that under apartheid

In this context is it any wonder that Tafelsig residents, who have
faced ongoing attacks by the Cape Town Unicity, have stood up for
their lives, their dignity, their futures?

And their reward? Blood and bullets, whilst the cut-offs proceeded.

We stand with the people of Tafelsig against state violence and
neo-liberalism. It is only through struggle from below that the
neo-liberal offensive will be defeated.

Neo-liberalism in South Africa is nothing more, and nothing less, than
an act of terrorism against the working class.

Cut-offs, retrenchments and evictions are acts of socio-economic
terror that discriminate against workers and the poor, for the benefit
of the rich.

The need for the working class fight the terrorism of state and
capital is more urgent than ever.



For social and economic justice and in defence of the poor and working
class, the Anti-Privatisation Forum campaigns for the immediate
termination of iGoli 2002, Wits 2001 and all initiatives to privatise
public assets.

The Forum is contesting plans to privatise the provision of basic
services in all areas of Gauteng. Participation is welcomed from all
organisations and individuals committed to the principles of free
basic services and an end to all cut-offs.

Its membership is drawn from SAMWU, IMATU, SASCO Wits, Jubilee 2000,
Kathorus Concerned Residents, the Working Class Co- ordinating
Committee, Democratic Socialist Movement, Bikisha Media Collective,
SOPA, Soweto Electricity Crisis Committee, Keep Left, and other

The APF meets on Mondays at 17h15 at the AIDC offices, 3rd Floor,
Cosatu House.

More info: Trevor or Virginia at 011-339-4121

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