Dear ProBonoMatters Community
It seems as if a new set of suburban road barricades is coming to the Parkmore/Benmore area, on the west of the Sandton Central Business District (CBD). I submit that: These barricades are coming up to violate my basic human rights and must be stopped.
Brownish poles, normally used as pillars in a palisade fence, have all of a sudden popped up on 8th Street, just next to the corner of Holt Street and Mattie Avenue. I had no way of verifying what these poles are coming to do but they sure look like the road barricades of old which as a freedom of movement limiting factor is going to become a serious inconvenience for my daily trips to and from work.
Moving from the Cresta/Ranburg area into the northern border of the Sandton CBD, the 8th, Holt and Mattie corner is a critical point in my daily trips to work. From home, I come off Republic Road into William Nicole towards Sandton. Then I branch off at Mattie and immediately turn right into 8th where the barricade is emerging (See Attached Map). From 8th towards Sandton, I branch off, leftwards, into Virginia Avenue which becomes Outspan Road. And then I join Benmore Road and emerge around Mediclinic Morningside. That is how I’ve managed to keep my morning travel to work around the 30 minutes mark.
I’ve stark to this road for about 10 years after calculating that the main roads and mainly the clocked William Nicole/Sandton Drives junction extends my daily trip to work into the other side of 60 minutes. I must state that a minor peak hour mishap can extend my trip considerably. As such, any permanent interference, a blockage, in the flow of traffic within the Parkmore/Benmore area is surely going to cram these roads during peak hours. The costs of such are going to be huge and warrant an uproar.
Surely my status as an everyday user of the 8th Street, Mattie and Holt junction, let alone the fact that I’m a law abiding rate paying citizen of the Johannesburg City, makes me a critical stakeholder in the formation of a barricade. I’ve not seen nor heard a thing that sounds like a public notice in my daily drives through the Parkmore/Benmore area. This must be an anomaly.
I’m not blind to the need of citizens to protect themselves against marauding criminals. Having been a victim of virulent crime myself I’ve submitted to the notion that people must do what it takes within reason to defend themselves against criminals, if the state is unable to protect them. Reason is a critical element to my position as I stand as a party that will be significantly and negatively impacted by the ensuing barricading of the Parkmore/Benmore area.
I’m of the view that the barricade brigade belongs to early 2000’s. This was when suburban communities who were driven by irrational fear of rising crime levels resorted to exclusion. Let alone the fact that the exclusionary measures go against basic principles that pillar our constitutional order, I’m yet to be convinced of the efficacy of these suburban barricades in fighting crime. I think there exist a host of alternatives to barricades which have not been tapped in the fight against suburban crime. I could be wrong but as a stakeholder who stands to be significantly and negatively impacted by the barricading of the Parkmore/Benmore area, I need to be convinced that this was a rational decision.
And so I ask the ProBonoMatters community: What are my options?