Statement by the Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF) in support of the memorandum of demands by the One Voice Of All Hawkers Association (OVOHA)

23 April 2008

One Voice Of All Hawkers Association (OVOHA) will this week deliver a memorandum of demands (pasted below) to the Johannesburg mayor. The Anti Privatisation Forum identifies with the struggle by hawkers to find a future in this city that is hostile to the poor. As much as the APF is waging struggles for housing and basic services, OVOHA is fighting for the rights of hawkers to make a living. The determination of the authorities to remove hawkers from the city`s pavements is in keeping with the offense by police and local government to evict poor people from their homes and disconnect services. The very existence of the poor mars the City Council`s vision of Joburg as a ‘world-class` city, and its response is uniformly to remove or sideline people that are inconvenient to this vision.

The poors` presence in the inner city has been made criminally liable. Hawkers have been targeted, their goods and only means of survival confiscated by the Johannesburg Metro police who troop about town to also issue fines as high as R500 to people least able to afford it. The street patrols and roadblocks set up by the police also disguise a strong xenophobic drive. Immigrants (and dark complexioned South Africans) are the almost exclusive targets of the police`s attention because they are vulnerable and the police hungry for bribes. South Africa may claim to be hosting the 2010 FIFA World Cup on behalf of the African continent but Joburg`s preparation strategies involve deporting as many African immigrants from the country as they can fill trains to the borders with.

The Gauteng Hawkers Association was a part of the early beginnings of the APF when it was participating in the Anti-iGoli 2002 Forum. The renewed voice of hawkers in the shape of the OVOHA is welcomed by the APF. The demands we level to the City are so similar that the affinity between our struggles is unbroken. The Forum supports the hawkers` struggle for a space in the city, and more broadly for a space for the poor in the city Joburg is becoming.


Anti Privatisation Forum
123 Pritchard Street (cnr Mooi)
6th floor Vogas House, Johannesburg.
Tel: (011) 333-8334 Fax: (011) 333-8365

Office no.11
Rosedale Mansions, 13 Koch Street Joubert Park 2001 Tel: 011 725 9475 or 082 817 6477

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INDIA. DP is irreparable, scrap it, say activists. Times of India (10 April 2015).

TANZANIA. College plans to identify trade opportunities for hawkers. Daily News (10 April 2015)  by Ludovick Kazoka.

INDIA. No street vendors, cycle rickshaws in Lajpat Nagar market: NGT. Zee News (8 April 2015) by PTI. New Delhi:

BOTSWANA. EDD is the way to go. Mmegi Online (8 April 2015).

USA. Five Courses: Hawkers' street food flair & more. Creative Loafing Tampa Bay (8 April 2015) by Meaghan Habuda.

INDIA. Hawkers may be allowed near Rishi Kapoor, Anil Ambani's Pali Hill residences. DNA India (8 April 2015) by Amrita Nayak Dutta.

ABU-DHABI. Abu Dhabi Municipality raid scares away street hawkers. Gulf News (7 April 2015).

SINGAPORE. Hawker centres to be spruced up with murals and art installations. Channel News Asia (5 April 2015) by Vimita Mohandas.

MALAYSIA. 'Development will be inclusive'. The Star Online (3 April 2015).

INDIA. 'Street vendors denied right to livelihood'. The Hindu (1 April 2015) by K.N. Umesh.

SOUTH AFRICA. South Africa: Xenophobic Violence in KZN - 'This Is a Black Easter for Foreigners'.

SINGAPORE. Singapore street food: stewed, sliced and steamed - video.

USA. Street vendors press city to legalize their trade.

StreetNet International

StreetNet International is an alliance of street vendors. It was launched in Durban, South Africa, in November 2002.

Membership-based organizations (unions, co-operatives or associations) directly organizing street vendors, market vendors and/or hawkers among their members, are entitled to affiliate to StreetNet International.

The aim of StreetNet is to promote the exchange of information and ideas on critical issues facing street vendors, market vendors and hawkers (i.e. mobile vendors) and on practical organizing and advocacy strategies