22 October 2012
Rural Network Press Statement
Rural Network Protest in Pietermaritzburg on 23 October 2012
We, the Rural Network, together with our comrades in Abahlali baseMjondolo and other poor people’s organisations, will be having a public protest march on the 23rd of October, 2012, in Pietermaritzburg, KwaZulu Natal. In light of the government’s failure to address the unlawful arrest of school children, illegal cattle impoundment, forced evictions and land distribution issues, we have been emboldened to march in order to keep the Department of Land Affairs (Department of Rural Development and Land Reform), and the Department of Justice accountable for their responsibilities. Moreover, violent actions by private farm security companies directed at farm tenants, dishonest officials changing their identities and equality violations continue as the government fails to arrest, question, and prosecute the initiators of illicit behaviour.
Indeed every other customary method to seek justice has been fruitlessly sought time and time again. However, we can no longer watch as children are forcefully evicted from their homes on unjust grounds, unwarranted violence and abuse pervades our communities, counsellors are at best apathetic and at worst hostile, and our basic rights, including that of clean water, are not being met. Furthermore, we are marching in order to reaffirm the dignity of black people living in rural and farming communities. The government and the justice system are in fact not just, but rather blinded by selfish ambitions. We have reached a point where we can no longer passively object to the actions of our government and we are demanding that our voices be heard.
Our public outcry, including about 2000 people, will commence at Dale’s Park on Berg Street, Pietermaritzburg, at 9:00am and conclude at the Department of Land Affairs. We would really appreciate if you would join us in support of the struggle for land, justice and dignity.
Where: Beginning at Dale’s Park on Berg Street, Pietermaritzburg
When: 9am to 1pm on October 23, 2012
Who: Contact people- Rev. S.S. Mthethwa 0782428568
Miss B. Ngema 0723496765
Mr. M. R. Dlamini 0723496765
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