Text by Christopher Clark. Photos by Shaun Swingler.
On a stifling afternoon in Johannesburg’s Alexandra township, Colletha*, a 45-year-old single mother, emerged from the back room of her small, meticulously ordered home with a slim blue plastic folder that contained her most important documents.
Among them was her late husband’s death certificate, her South African ID, and a letter of authority stating that she was the beneficiary of her husband’s estate, most notably the RDP house that he’d been allocated in 2006.
Having lost her husband more than a decade ago, Colletha now faced losing the home they had intended to share together, on the cramped eastern edge of Alexandra next to the busy N3 Bypass.
Colletha said that in early February a local “vigilante” group called Bonafide Organization, which has been accused of illegally evicting dozens of foreign nationals from RDP houses in Extension 7 since mid-November last year, had told her that she was on their list for further evictions scheduled for the coming weeks.