CAPE TOWN – It seems there’s still a lot to be decided when it comes to how government plans to de-densify areas.
Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu announced last week that certain areas that were simply not conducive to social distancing would have to be thinned out.
One of the areas she mentioned by name was the Cape Town informal settlement of Du Noon.
People in Du Noon live in incredibly close quarters, stand in the small space between dwellings. The spaces are so small that if you stretch out your arms, you can touch both homes.
It’s like there’s no such thing as lockdown in this area – people were braaing together, children played in groups in between the aluminium structures.
There’s nowhere for them to socially isolate – their homes were tiny and most housed several people.
It’s areas like these that Human Settlements Minister Lindiwe Sisulu was worried about as COVID-19 spreads.
“We need to come in and assist them to de-densify the areas.”
But how this process would play out seemed unclear – local councillor Lubabalo Makeleni said that he was given fliers to hand out to residents but he did not even understand what they were about.
“I’d really like to know where these people will be taken to, how far this place is from Du Noon, the public transport, is there going to be water and sanitation, safety and security and refuse collection?”
People in this area had mixed feelings about moving out for the lockdown, with most saying they’d only pack up their possessions if their new home was a permanent one.
For official information about COVID-19 from the Department of Health, please click here.