Friday, August 18, 2006

Sudan removes squatters' slum housing nr Khartoum

Khartoum is surrounded by miles of slum housing where millions of Sudanese from the war-torn south and west of the country have sought shelter over the past two decades from conflict, disease and famine.

But land prices have soared and the government wants the land the build houses or sell to investors. Full report Sudan Tribune Aug 18, 2006.
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Aug 17 2006 BBC report - UN call to stop Sudan demolitions - Heavily armed policemen and tanks had surrounded the squatter camp at Dar es Salaam, some 40km from the capital, before moving in at 0800 local time, the UN said in a statement on Thursday. United Nations officials in the area were barred from entering the area, but heard gunshots. There are reports of deaths, including a child.
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In the comments at Drima's Sudanese Thinker blog, a reader called Tse asks:

How come land prices skyrocketed for land near Karthoum? Does the government provide alternative housing? What's gonna happen to these unfortunate people now?

Drima replied:
"Land prices are skyrocketing in Khartoum because of the massive number of foreigners and companies moving into Khartoum's best districts. Demand is increasing quickly and as a consequence so are the prices. Higher prices mean more profit for businessmen with conncetions to the government or in the government. Since normal business in Sudan is risky because of corruption and a screwed up economy, many people over the years have turned to investing in real estate because it's much less riskier. There are so many foreigners in Khartoum now and it's slowly getting crowded. Investors want to develop massive areas of land surrounding Khartoum to accomodate the growing demand. They clear the land. They use it and they make more money. The rich gets richer and the poor get poorer.

Alternative housing??! LOL. Welcome to Sudan where there is no such thing. Here in Malaysia, the government by the law must provide decent alternative housing before removing illegal squaters. Sudan? Nada, zip, nothing! These people have to go and squater somewhere else now. They'll be forced to move to worse places with no proper access to water or electricity. Getting some water will require a longer walk.

It's one sad disgusting reality that I can't stand Tse. Sudan now is like Europe during the dark ages.

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