Stories of 2018

To round up 2018, we bring you some of the important stories we covered this year.

This is the last post from this year. 2018 has been a challenging year on all fronts. Elitsha has brought you stories that mattered in 2018, stories about how the outside world has affected you and how the black working class in South Africa and in your area has affected the world.

In Cape Town in January we were faced with water crisis. Water activists have called it water mismanagement based on the fact that they believe that the crisis level of water in Cape Town was unnecessary and could have been avoided.

DA leadership at the launch of #DefeatDayZero campaign in Cape Town.

The ongoing train crisis especially in the Western Cape was a major contributor to late coming and job losses.

File Photo: Delays cause serious overcrowding on trains when they do come to and from Khayelitsha. Photo by Mandla Mnyakama

A cult church in Engcobo, a rural town in the Eastern Cape, brought the issue of religion and how churches, especially Pentecostal churches are run, to the fore.

Students in higher learning institutions especially in the Eastern Cape brought the issue of accommodation into mainstream debate. The FeesMustFall movement in 2015/16 saw students from previously disadvantaged institutions protesting not just against fees but also for better living conditions on campuses.

Workers, especially those affiliated to the South African Federation of Trade Unions, and activists protested against labour law amendments that they argued would restrict the right to strike and privilege unions entrenched in bargaining councils. The amendments were signed into law in November by President Ramaphosa anyway.

SAFTU unions mobilised against the adoption of changes to SA’s labour laws. Photo by Mzi Velapi

In 2018 we saw so-called Coloured communities in the Cape and elsewhere protesting against poor policing and what they have termed as the “neglect of Coloured communities in post democratic South Africa.”

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The Cape Flats communities of Bishop Lavis, Bonteheuwel, Nooitgedatcht and Valhalla Park demanded more police visibility in schools and in their communities. Photo by Mzi Velapi

Foreign nationals in Cape Town called for the re-opening of the refugee office in Foreshore so that they can apply for or renew their asylum there, rather than in faraway Pretoria.

While the refugee reception office remains shut, the protesters charge that in recent weeks, asylum seekers and refugee permit holders have been fined up to R5,000 for extension arrears. Photo by Mzi Velapi

The question of land entered mainstream debate in South Africa during the year. There were hearings all over the country on whether South Africa should expropriate land without compensation or not.


Khoi-San leaders outside the venue where the land expropriation hearing took place in Cape Town. Photo by Mzi Velapi

In the month of August, we saw gender activists, feminists and women taking to the streets against gender-based violence and the need for the South African government to do something against the scourge.

A protest by women in SA in August that demanded  that the government must implement a sustained media campaign against gender-based violence among other demands. Photo by Mzi Velapi

A Human Science Research Council of South Africa released a survey report that revealed that young people especially primary school girl children are victims of sexual abuse.

Learners and teachers from schools who participated in the HSRC study discussing the findings. Photo by Mzi Velapi

There was also an explosion at the state-owned arms manufacturer, Denel, that left 8 workers dead in Macassar near Somerset West in Cape Town.

In 2018, Elitsha brought you the second international congress of domestic workers where they decided to fight to improve working conditions of migrant domestic workers.

The International Domestic Workers Federation wants more countries to ratify ILO Convention 189 on Decent Work for domestic workers. Photo by Mzi Velapi

The ongoing strike by MyCiTi bus project workers in Cape Town presented a problem for the municipality and for trade unions. The strikers are fighting for the City of Cape Town to directly employ them instead of outsourcing.

Striking MyCiTi bus project workers want to take the City to court to force their insourcing. Photo by Mzi Velapi

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