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Publication Details

Reference
ana  (2004) Angry Residents of Phiri Empty Buckets of Waste at Local Councillor’s Office. Indymedia South Africa : -.

Summary
100 people protesting pre-paid water meters and Johannesburg Water’s Operation Gcinamanzi (“save water”) marched on the local councillors’ office in Phiri, Soweto on Friday, 23 April 2004.

100 people protesting pre-paid water meters and Johannesburg Water’s Operation Gcinamanzi (“save water”) marched on the local councillors’ office in Phiri, Soweto on Friday, 23 April 2004. Protestors said they are concerned about the effects of Johannesburg Water’s installation of pre-paid water meters in the area that has led to the disconnection of water supplies of more than 20 households. Residents from neighbouring areas who participated also voiced their concern about the planned extension of pre-paid meters to other parts of Soweto, as Phiri has been seen as a test case for JW’s Operation Gcinamanzi. On arriving at the local councillors’ office to submit their memorandum, the marchers were met by police in riot gear. Since the local councillor was not available to receive a memorandum, protestors expressed their frustration with JW’s disregard for poor households by emptying buckets of waste outside the entrance of the office.

This march was the most recent of a number of protests and mobilizations by various organizations (including the Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF) and the Coalition Against Water Privatisation) against the installation of pre-paid water meters. Johannesburg Water has repeatedly refused to engage with residents concerned about the spread of water disconnections in areas where pre-paid meters have been installed. Efforts by the Orange Farm Water Crisis Committee to organize a meeting between concerned residents and representatives of JW in Orange Farm last Sunday were frustrated by yet another short-notice cancellation on the part of JW. The seminar that brought together residents from various extensions in Orange Farm took place nonetheless.







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