A fire in the Joe Slovo informal settlement broke out on the 16th of April 2022. The massive blaze took close to six hours to fully extinguish, with approximately 1200 people affected.
Many residents lost all of their possessions in the fire and are struggling to rebuild. Fires are a common problem in Cape Town’s informal settlements, often spreading quickly due to congested conditions.
Three hundred homes were destroyed, leaving over 1200 residents destitute. Overcrowding and a dire lack of critical infrastructure are significant contributors to fires regularly devastating Cape Town’s townships. Harsh and compact living conditions make residents vulnerable to such fires occurring perpetually, contribute to the spread of infectious diseases such as TB, and render residents victims of criminal activity and violence.
The Department of Human Settlements, again, reminded citizens that they are working on providing infrastructure and building homes for people living in informal settlements.
This film describes residents experiences of the fire and its aftermath as well as government commitments for assisting. Directed and edited by Samuel Flans, with camera work by Alfa Fipaza.