FORCED REMOVALS FROM KOMMETJIE

Posted on November 9, 2020 · Posted in History
Created by Reagan Rubain

Kommetjie is a quiet sea-side village in the South Peninsula of Cape Town. A few kilometres inland from Kommetjie lies Ocean View. This settlement, with minimal view of the ocean, was created in 1968 by the apartheid government for the express purpose of housing  “coloured” people (as classified by apartheid) who had been forcibly removed from their homes in Simonstown, Noordhoek, Sunnydale, Kommetjie and other surrounding areas, which had been declared “white” according to the Group Areas Act of 1950.

The families of Jacob and Louisa Daniels,  Apollis and Rosie Allen, and Pollie Brand and Johanna Francke lived in Kommetjie, and were all forced to move to Ocean View between 1968 and 1972. Many descendants of these three families live in Ocean View today. 

Members of the three families agreed to meet and tell their family stories. Mrs Louisa Layters (of the Daniels family) wrote her own story “My Bitter-Sweet Memories” which she offered to share here, and which complements the story told by her older brother and sister. We are deeply grateful to you all.

I can only imagine the courage it took for the family members to revisit the pain of forced removal from Kommetjie. Hearing first-hand of this devastating life experience made a deep impression on me, and helped me to better understand something of the trauma suffered through this terrible experience.

These stories are an important part of our shameful history that “we cannot afford to forget” (quoted from Siona O’Connell, in her book Impossible Return, about forced removals from Harfield Village, page 13).

I am deeply sorry for all the suffering and trauma that these three families, and the whole Ocean View community, have experienced through being forcibly removed from the places they called home.

My hope is that those of us living in communities neighbouring Ocean View may grow in our understanding of the history of forced removals in our area and of the deep pain suffered, and that we may work towards restitution of the enormous losses suffered. 

                                                Compiled by Mary-Anne Potts    April 2020   Kommetjie  

We are raising funds for two mosaic benches to mark the forced removal of three families from Kommetjie during the apartheid forced removals. Find out about the fundraiser here: https://www.kommetjie.org/2020/11/were-raising-funds-for-two-mosaic-benches-to-mark-the-forced-removal/

Links to the family stories below: