Cosatu kicks up stink over toilets
Union federation attacks DA, supports ANCYL’s complaint move
COSATU has now stepped into the furore over the Khayelitsha toilets which were built without walls by the City of Cape Town, saying that it supports the ANCYL’s move to lodge a formal complaint against the municipality – and attacked the DA’s governing skills.
The federation’s spokesman, Mluleki Mntungwa, accused the DA of “violating people’s dignity” for giving the hundreds of Makhaza residents toilets with absolutely no privacy.
Mntungwa said yesterday: “Cosatu is dismayed at the way the DA-led Western Cape government is treating the poor people of Makhaza in Khayelitsha. (The toilets issue) is a clear indication to the people of South Africa that the DA does not have the interests of poor people at heart.”
The issue was brought into the spotlight this week when ANCYLs Dullah Omar region deputy chairman Chumile Sali lodged a compliant with the Human Rights Commission (SAHRC), asking that the city be compelled to build walls around the 1 400 toilets built in 2007.
The locals at Ward 90 Makhaza section said this week that they have to cover themselves with blankets when they use the toilets. Some were so embarrassed to relieve themselves during the day that they had to wait until dark.
Sali said the toilets were an “embarrassment” and “a crime against humanity”.
But the city has shot back, saying the ANCYL’s move was a way to “score political points”.
City councillor Stuart Pringle, of the Charlotte Maxeke Subcouncil, said the city was committed “to working with communities to provide sustainable housing”.
“We were in agreement with the residents in 2007 that we would build temporary toilets, and they would be responsible for building the walls. I have ascertained that of the 1 400 toilets we built, 1 350 were walled by the community.”
Pringle said the issue had never been raised by residents before.
“It is therefore unfortunate that the ANCYL has chosen to bypass the subcouncil and rush to the media and the Human Rights Commission.”
However, Mntungwa was adamant that as long as the DA remained in power “it will have no interest in poor people”.
“It goes without saying that the Western Cape poor people will always be treated as second class. I am not surprised that the DA would accuse us of trying to score points. We are only mobilising for the sake of the people. The City of Cape Town should only focus on building decent facilities for people,” said Mntungwa.