Dear Ratepayers and law-abiding Citizens of Hout Bay, The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa is the Supreme Law of the Republic and guarantees, amongst others, the enforcement of the rights of its citizens in our Courts of Law. The Bill of Rights is a cornerstone of democracy and enshrines the rights of ALL the people in our country. The preamble to the Constitution states that South Africa belongs to all who live in it…yet many of us are being made to feel that BECAUSE our hard work and industrious application of our resources have enabled us to become tax and rate-paying citizens in this country, we are excluded from the protection and recognition of our rights by Government, and that we should just put up with having our civil rights violated. Moreover, the violation of our rights, such as the right to have our environment protected and the right to public participation in Local Government matters, are being effected by the very people whom we have elected to be the custodians of those rights!Of specific concern is the current trend by Local Government to hijack our public spaces. The HSRC (Human Sciences Research Council) found this trend to be of such concern that it hosted a national conference, under the heading “Public Spaces and Public Participation in Cape Town”, specifically dealing with the issue of the closing of these spaces and the lack of authentic public participation when doing so. Despite the fact that, without due process, this is both unconstitutional, unlawful and in contravention of public interest, it has come to our attention that similar decisions have been made and actions been taken, by the City og Cape Town (CoCT), with regard to the unlawful use of not only our public spaces, but also the development of other environmentally sensitive areas in Hout Bay, that will effect radical and permanent changes to the character and natural beauty of our precious environment. These changes involve, amongst others, the de-proclamation of UNESCO World Heritage sites, and the rezoning of public spaces and other current zonings for high density low cost housing. As a consequence, not only will the environment be negatively affected, but also the local economy, specifically tourism and its related industries within Hout Bay, and ultimately result in massive job losses.
Although due process would have required that such development proposals be announced to the entire Hout Bay Community, this is not the case. HBRA came to learn about this fortuitously, in a private meeting, behind closed doors, and has consequently been compelled to enter into a “David and Goliath” type High Court battle. The HBRA is attempting to enforce the Constitutionally-protected fundamental rights, including the right to administrative action that is lawful, reasonable and procedurally fair. Very few law-abiding citizens are aware of the fact that private citizens can hold Government accountable in a legitimate and legal battle to ensure that the Rule of Law is upheld.
Hout Bay needs to accept that if it does not fight for its rights, this magnificent Valley, you have chosen to make your home, will cease to exist as you know it in a very short space of time.
Is this deja vu? Hout Bay ratepayers, city in fresh dispute | IOL News 2004
Please consider the following:
The HBRA protects the interests and rights of the law abiding rate-paying citizens of Hout Bay. We would like to see a Hout Bay where everyone lives in decent living conditions and in an acceptable environment where the development and growth is measured, and where we all have our Constitutional rights to a crime-free and organised suburb upheld.
All the above points will be expanded on at a forthcoming HBRA informative meeting, to be advised. In order for us to continue this expensive legal battle, we need to raise R1,000,000 urgently and require your donations NOW please. Kindly show your support by donating to our below bank account, details of which can be verified on our website: http://www.houtbayratepayers.co.za.
Please forward this to all friends and family residing in Hout Bay.
Thank you from the HBRA Team!