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This is an archive of the Treatment Action Campaign's public documents from
December 1998 until October 2008. I created this website because the TAC's
website appears unmaintained and people were concerned that it
was becoming increasingly hard to find important documents.
The menu items have been slightly edited and a new stylesheet applied to the site. But none of the documents have been edited, not even for minor errors. The text appears on this site as obtained from the Internet Archive.
The period covered by the archive encompassed the campaign for HIV medicines, the civil disobedience campaigns, the Competition Commission complaints, the 2008 xenophobic violence and the PMTCT, Khayelitsha health workers and Matthias Rath court cases.
Refugees, TAC members and people from other organisations protest at the Cape Town Civic Centre on 12 June 2008
I watched from a distance as the xenophobic violence unfolded in South Africa. At first, I was ashamed - Is this what our young democracy has become? My shame evolved to anger as the utter lack of leadership and inadequate government response further exacerbated the situation. However, amid these feelings of disgust, I also felt pride and admiration towards those proactive organizations who worked to alleviate the suffering of displaced peoples. The Jewish community and TAC paid for a group of around 140 refugees to stay at the train lodge until yesterday, when they ran out of funds. The mosque on Tennyson Street opened its doors to more than 180 refugees. Old TAC offices have been converted to refugee camps, and hundreds are staying in Methodist Churches around the city.
As of today, TAC and the Cape Town Jewish Community are unable to continue raising money to pay for the accommodation of the group known as the Caledon Square refugees (because they originally spent 3 days sleeping outside Caledon Square Police Station). This is after all the responsibility of the state not civil society or private individuals. The city has refused to open civic or community centres to shelter them, even though there are many that would be suitable in the Central Business District and its surrounding suburbs.
One day later, 13 June, 17:20 About 100 of the Caledon Square Group continue to sit in. They are being supported by about 25 TAC members. The city and province met for hours yesterday and again today, yet there is still no decision on what to do. It's quite absurd. From Sunday morning, the the whole Caledon Square Group has absolutely nowhere to go. --Nathan Geffen
18:20 I have now left the Civic Centre, but will try to provide further updates if their are any development regarding the continuing occupation of the building. --EG
17:42 It is a scandal that the Province and City could not establish a joint task team until now. After four hours of meetings, they have not even been able to open a single hall or offer the comrades from the Caledon Square Group accommodation. Therefore, the Caledon Square Group will stay here and spend the night in the Civic Centre. A group of TAC comrades will stay with them. Hopefully we will be able to bring food and blankets for the comrades who stay. It is truly shameful that the City and Province cannot do better than this. --EG
17:19 This is what Smit says:
MEMORANDUM TO THE MAYOR OF THE CITY OF CAPE TOWN AND THE PREMIERS OFFICE
The Caledon Square Group is concerned, deeply concerned, about the strategies put in place by the City of Cape Town over the decision made by the Cape High Court concerning the Premier of the Western Cape’s application to open and accommodate refugees temporarily in all civic centres around the city.
How can you respond to the xenophobia crisis?
The Treatment Action Campaign invites you to come to a workshop explaining how you can take action against xenophobia. It will take place on Monday 16th June 2:30 - 4:30.