Child shot as homes are torn down in Angola

Child shot as homes are torn down in Angola

By staff writers
16 Mar 2006

Child shot as homes are torn down in Angola

-16/03/06

A Christian aid agency has reported that police and security forces have torn down the homes of more than 300 poor families living in the Angolan capital Luanda.

During the operation a four-year-old girl was shot and several residents were beaten, according to eyewitnesses.

Christian Aid reports that armed police, private security forces and bulldozers arrived in the Cambamba 1 and 2 neighbourhoods on Monday to clear the houses and make way for a new housing project.

The residents, among the poorest people in Luanda, have received no compensation for the destruction of their homes. There are no plans to re-house them, and they have nowhere to go.

Christian Aidís partner SOS Habitat, which protects poor peopleís housing rights, is protesting against the evictions, which are illegal under Angolan law. One SOS Habitat activist, Antonio Pinto, was arrested and another had his camera seized as they were trying to document the destruction.

Many residents of Cambamba 1 and 2 have lived there for 20 years. They are being forcibly evicted to make way for a new government housing development called ëNova Vidaí, meaning New Life.

This development, for Luandaís growing middle class, will see the construction of homes worth up to 500,000 US dollars.

The families were told on Saturday that they would be evicted, but were given no written notice.

Cambamba residents have faced repeated demolitions in recent months. With nowhere else to go, each time they have rebuilt shelters in the ruins of their former homes. Now the government is trying to force them to leave the area for good.

"These demolitions contravene basic human rights and Angolan law," said Ollie Sykes, Christian Aidís programme manager for Angola.

"The Government of Angola needs to act within its own laws and act equitably in the way it treats its own citizens. The government must follow the correct legal process, pay compensation where it is due and re-house people who have lost their homes."

A Christian aid agency has reported that police and security forces have torn down the homes of more than 300 poor families living in the Angolan capital Luanda.

During the operation a four-year-old girl was shot and several residents were beaten, according to eyewitnesses.

Christian Aid reports that armed police, private security forces and bulldozers arrived in the Cambamba 1 and 2 neighbourhoods on Monday to clear the houses and make way for a new housing project.

The residents, among the poorest people in Luanda, have received no compensation for the destruction of their homes. There are no plans to re-house them, and they have nowhere to go.

Christian Aidís partner SOS Habitat, which protects poor peopleís housing rights, is protesting against the evictions, which are illegal under Angolan law. One SOS Habitat activist, Antonio Pinto, was arrested and another had his camera seized as they were trying to document the destruction.

Many residents of Cambamba 1 and 2 have lived there for 20 years. They are being forcibly evicted to make way for a new government housing development called ëNova Vidaí, meaning New Life.

This development, for Luandaís growing middle class, will see the construction of homes worth up to 500,000 US dollars.

The families were told on Saturday that they would be evicted, but were given no written notice.

Cambamba residents have faced repeated demolitions in recent months. With nowhere else to go, each time they have rebuilt shelters in the ruins of their former homes. Now the government is trying to force them to leave the area for good.

"These demolitions contravene basic human rights and Angolan law," said Ollie Sykes, Christian Aidís programme manager for Angola.

"The Government of Angola needs to act within its own laws and act equitably in the way it treats its own citizens. The government must follow the correct legal process, pay compensation where it is due and re-house people who have lost their homes."

Keywords: angola
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