Wednesday, April 22, 2009

the soccer war

The South African poet and freedom fighter Dennis Brutus, now 85 years young, has joined a march protesting the destruction and disruption of street markets in Durban as South Africa hosts the football World Cup in 2010. Blogger Sriram Veera offers an appraisal.

Towards the end of his post, he offers this:
Henry Ramlal, the chairman of the Warwick Avenue market committee, a short fierce man, expresses his amazement in strong language. "This is ridiculous. You can beautify the entrance of the city; knock us out, take us down, but what you going to do with the heart of the city? The crime rate is already high and what will you achieve by demolishing our market. What will all these families do? Won’t crime go up?” He says the municipality has offered them a different location for four months. “What after that? What sort of plan is this? Isn’t our site a heritage site? Won’t the tourists come to this spot as a tourist attraction? More importantly, where are the poor people going to buy their stuff? You can’t clean the city of its people."
Dennis Brutus's advice: "You’ve got to keep fighting. Keep fighting."

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