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A part of Cape town is threatening to die

Sometimes, you can tell in the Bo-Kaap, go to the guides through your neighborhood with many colorful houses and explain to the tourists why the buildings have such bold colors: So people can find your apartment back when you drunk in the evening after coming home. Bo-Kaap is a Muslim quarter in Cape town, where many residents drink no alcohol. The guides are just as foreign as the other Strangers that lead you through the Bo-Kaap, a neighborhood that is threatening to its original inhabitants but also themselves.

We have survived slavery and Apartheid, the struggle against gentrification, we lose but possibly, Razeen Diedericks says it. 38 years old, he is old, he has all of 38 in the Bo-Kaap spent. "The question is, how long are we still here," he says. It is a Thursday evening, Diedericks, with about 50 others at a road junction on the outskirts of the district, the evening rush past creeps, the small group raise their signs up high, where it says: "Save our heritage". In addition to a new concrete, in the Transporter, again, a large skyscraper, luxury apartments for the Wealthy. So it goes everywhere in the Bo-Kaap: "Many of the original inhabitants are forced to. We have to give up relations for decades," says Diedericks. A part of the city and its history threatens to die.

How colorful building blocks in the concrete desert: houses in Bo-Kaap. Photo:

Bo-Kaap, the Name of the neighborhood means something like "above the Cape", is one of the largest tourist attractions in South Africa. Daily whole busloads to be carted through the narrow streets. Was established in Bo-Kaap as quarters for the slaves from the former Dutch colonies were forcibly brought to the Cape mainly from the present-day Indonesia and Malaysia. During the Apartheid era, nearly all were banished White from the city center, in far-flung Townships, the Cape Malays of Bo-Kaap could, however, remain. They created a special district in which there is a real neighborhood, and not Hide behind walls and electric fences, as is usual in Cape town is common.

What has not managed to Apartheid, is now the real estate market. For years, the prices are on the rise in Cape town, because there – unlike in the otherwise stagnant South Africa – still new jobs to be created. The city has grown since 2001 to a quarter to about four million inhabitants. To do this, Cape town has become due to the weakness of the local currency, the Rand, for international investors and speculators attractive.

In the district with a population of 6,000, there is only one police car

Ultimately, the original inhabitants, however, are also partly to blame for the Situation. Up to the end of Apartheid, most of them were only tenants, the apartments belonged to the state. With the change, the opportunity to be the owner offered to very reasonable prices. Today, many sell again, at prices which are partly a hundred times over the purchase price. A three-bedroom house currently costs around 340 000 Swiss francs. Entirely voluntary, the sale is but not always. The families of the Cape Malays often live with ten or more people in a house. The head of the family dies, the inheritance is divided. Even if the children want to continue to live in the house – no one can in the current real estate, the siblings prices pay off. So is sold and in the suburbs is pulled, the once close-knit community is broken.

As a kind of Wallpaper, Bo-Kaap is of great value for tourism.

"Many of the owners we will never see, let the flats stand empty or rent them on Airbnb," says Jacky Poking from the tenants and civic Association Bo-Kaap. The new conditions of a mess would the whole dynamic of the neighborhood. "In the past, we have left the doors open. Now we pay more attention on our security, have to do it." Bo-Kaap was long an area in which there was not much work to pick up. In the past few years, it was for Criminals to be more attractive, the it to the wealthy newcomers have apart and Established as a kind of by-catch. In the district, with a population of 6,000, there is only one police car, sometimes turning his rounds. But also often not.

"The city does not care about us," says Jacky Poking. In 2013, her group has filed with the municipal administration an application to the district in the use of land the Status of a local heritage grant, which would make it difficult for new construction projects. The former mayor has left the application but, she was said to have a special closeness to investors. The attempt, according to many residents, to divide the growing Protest of the inhabitants. Individual investors to trade with a group of young activists of the contracts, to ensure that the community benefits from the huge new buildings and do not overwhelm. Social housing and jobs promised. "These apartments are still unaffordable for most people here, and the jobs are often Set as a guard," says Jacky Poking. The young protesters of the long-established civic Association say to have to watch the change in Bo-Kaap for a long passive. It was only when the young decide to burn half a year ago, the tire people, the city for the Protest.

As a kind of tourist photo of the Bo-Kaap is of great value for the tourism industry is Wallpaper. During the Apartheid era most of the houses were white or in pastel colors, which lay on the limestone, with which they were plastered. Especially after the end of apartheid, the houses were but always colorful, to tell the inhabitants, Proud of the new property. The bright colors attract tourists.

The bright paint, even run-down houses look beautiful: A street corner in Bo-Kaap. Photo:

Bo-Kaap itself, little had so far, the buses just drove through. The inhabitants have slept through it, to let your district as a national cultural heritage register and have long wish to no way, or seen to benefit from the tourist boom. The cuisine of the Cape Malays is not good, a Restaurant that we could recommend enthusiastically, there are in Bo-Kaap but not necessarily street food for tourists. That should change now, says the civic Association. South Africa's Minister of culture announced a few days ago that the district levied in the coming year to the National cultural heritage and are thus particularly protected. Perhaps the insight is in the policy, that the Bo-Kaap is without its inhabitants the same. (Editorial Tamedia)

Created: 05.01.2019, 20:00 Uhr

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