Photo Essay

When rains came to Monwabisi Park, Khayelitsha

By Leila Dougan 3 July 2018

Monwabisi Park residents have been digging trenches throughout the informal settlement in order to prevent rainwater from flooding their homes. 2 July 2018. Photo: Leila Dougan

Heavy Cape Town rain continued throughout July 2, and while many considered the downpour a reprieve from the drought, the weather was bittersweet for those living in informal settlements who were forced to endure freezing temperatures, strong winds and flooding.

The City of Cape Town reported that 4,000 informal structures across the city had been affected and many families had been forced to abandon their structures due to flooding. Mandy Thomas, spokeswoman for Disaster Risk Management in the City of Cape Town, said they did not have to offer alternative accommodation as many affected residents had decided to stay with friends or family members. Deputy caucus leader JP Smith said the City has been trying to encourage residents in informal settlements to raise their structures to avoid flooding and digging trenches between structures to encourage water runoff. DM

Mandy Thomas, spokesperson for Disaster Risk Management for the City of Cape Town says residents can call the disaster management centre, they will then do an assessment to figure out whether residents need to be evacuated, “there are various levels of flooding, whether it’s knee height or ankle height,” she says. 2 July 2018. Photo: Leila Dougan
A boy is reflected in a puddle in Monwabisi Park, Khayelitsha. Parents in the area have expressed concern about their children getting ill when flooding occurs. 2 July 2018. Photo: Leila Dougan


A little girl runs through the rain in Monwabisi Park, Khayelitsha, 2 July 2018. Deputy caucus leader, JP Smith says that the situation residents living in informal settlements face are “challenging” during times of heavy rain, especially those living in low lying areas which are particulary prone to flooding. Photo: Leila Dougan


Lolo Malotana (32) has been living in Monwabisi Park, Khayelitsha, for 20 years. She says the area has reached very low temperatures and each year residents need to figure out how to protect themselves and their belongings from flooding. “The water comes from the road through the houses, my neighbours also have the same problem,” she says. “We are waiting [for a house] for about seven years now”. 2 July 2018. Photo: Leila Dougan
A few personal items including a clock and table are all that remains in one of the shacks in Monwabisi Park, Khayelitsha, after heavy winter rains in Cape Town. 4000 informal structures have been affected across the city. 2 July 2018. Photo: Leila Dougan
Deputy caucus leader JP Smith speaks to journalists as Monwabisi Park, Khayelitsha where thousands of residents have been displaced as a result of flooding. He says the city’s ability to intervene and install stormwater systems which will reduce flooding is “difficult” in low lying areas that are being occupied. He says the flooding is “small” and “localised” compared to rpevious years. 2 July 2018. Photo: Leila Dougan
Residents in Monwabisi Park, Khayelitsha, are using bricks and sandbags to keep their structures secure during winter storms. 2 July 2018. Photo: Leila Dougan

Watch Pauli van Wyk’s Cat Play The Piano Here!

No, not really. But now that we have your attention, we wanted to tell you a little bit about what happened at SARS.

Tom Moyane and his cronies bequeathed South Africa with a R48-billion tax shortfall, as of February 2018. It's the only thing that grew under Moyane's tenure... the year before, the hole had been R30.7-billion. And to fund those shortfalls, you know who has to cough up? You - the South African taxpayer.

It was the sterling work of a team of investigative journalists, Scorpio’s Pauli van Wyk and Marianne Thamm along with our great friends at amaBhungane, that caused the SARS capturers to be finally flushed out of the system. Moyane, Makwakwa… the lot of them... gone.

But our job is not yet done. We need more readers to become Maverick Insiders, the friends who will help ensure that many more investigations will come. Contributions go directly towards growing our editorial team and ensuring that Daily Maverick and Scorpio have a sustainable future. We can’t rely on advertising and don't want to restrict access to only those who can afford a paywall subscription. Membership is about more than just contributing financially – it is about how we Defend Truth, together.

So, if you feel so inclined, and would like a way to support the cause, please join our community of Maverick Insiders.... you could view it as the opposite of a sin tax. And if you are already Maverick Insider, tell your mother, call a friend, whisper to your loved one, shout at your boss, write to a stranger, announce it on your social network. The battle for the future of South Africa is on, and you can be part of it.


Please note you must be a Maverick Insider to comment. Sign up here or if you are already an Insider.

Our Burning Planet

No Tomorrow, Part One: Gwede Mantashe, climate suicide & the ANC’s 2019 election manifesto

By Kevin Bloom

Popsicles were originally going to be called "Eppsicles" after their inventor Frank Epperson.