We are part of Grahamstown
mistake, if we have to we will fight back.
There is no peace in Grahamstown. What has happened to us was destructive, heartless and cruel. Like everyone else in the country we have been very impressed by the students’ struggle. We would also like our children to be able to go to university. The students are fighting for all of us. We are calling on the students to support us.
We are all people. We must treat each other with respect. We want peace. On Friday, at 1pm, we will gather at the City Hall and we will pray outside the City Hall. We will do this to show that we are still here, that we are also South Africans, that we are also part of Grahamstown and to protest against what has been done to us. We are asking anyone who believes in justice and that all people should be respected to form a human chain around us as we pray.
We issue the following ten demands:
1. Jacob Zuma and his whole cabinet must come to Grahamstown, see what is happening and meet with us to discuss this crisis and a way forward.
2. The police, the councillors and the mayor need to communicate clearly with the community about what is happening with the killings. This must happen immediately.
3. The media must clearly communicate that rumours about the killings in Grahamstown are not true.
4. There must be a full investigation into the role of
Photo: Kate Janse van Rensburg
police, the taxi association and the councillors in these attacks.
5. Home Affairs need to set up a special process to get new passports for our husbands.
6. Our husbands need to be safe to be able to come back and open their shops. We need to be safe. Our children need to be safe.
7. People must accept the way that we dress.
8. The government must give support to us rebuild our shops, our homes.
9. The police must investigate these killings properly and must communicate the progress of their investigation properly.
10. The police must investigate the attacks on us as well as the looting of our shops properly.
We are requesting people to help us, our children and our husbands with clothing, toiletries and food. We are also requesting legal support so that we can sue the police and Hi-Tec for compensation as in most cases they did not try and stop the looting.
We are also requesting that all churches, trade unions, and community leaders must unite to oppose these rumours and to oppose the attempt to drive us out of Grahamstown.