Laundry at Parly gates

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July 6, 2017
Laundry at Parly gates

HOUSE CLEANING: William hangs up wasgoed outside Parliament

Homeless man says it’s the best and safest place to dry blankets

At least  one person is ready to air their laundry at Parliament.
Unfortunately, it’s not a politician.

Motorists and passers-by in Roeland Street were puzzled yesterday when they saw an elderly man hanging out his washing in front of the national assembly.

Die nat wasgoed was thrown over the metal railings in front of the gates of Parly, and every so often, the man would check to see if it’s dry.

The man identified himself as “40-year-old William Noor”, and told Daily Voice he’s been living on the pavement outside parliament for the past two weeks.


 QUIRKY: Man calls himself William Noor and claims he is 40

Asked where he is from or where he lives, he pointed to his makeshift cardboard bed against the wall, which he calls “Rondebosch”.

“I’m doing my washing and also my wife’s washing and because our clothes never get dry, I hung it on the poles because the sunlight is drying it fast here,” explains William.

Scratching in his bag filled with various documents, he finds a dirty cloth to wipe his cold wet nose.

William says he got up around 6am to wash his three blankets and his wife’s fleece pyjamas, and about six T-shirts and pants.

He says this is the “safest place in Cape Town” to hang his laundry.

“The blankets are thick so it takes long to dry, I sometimes go take a walk to see what I can collect to eat while it dries,” he explains.

“Living on the streets is sometimes tough but we need to do what we must to survive.

“Here is no washing lines and comfortable way of living.

“I don’t have children so at least it’s not that difficult for me to survive because it’s only me and my wife on the street and we make it work together.”

More homeless people sleep along the fence at Parliament’s main entrance.

A woman in her 60s who doesn’t want to be named says she prefers living on the streets over living in her home close to Worcester.

“I know I made bad choices in life and that’s the reason I’m living on the street, but I’d rather be here than live at home where I struggle daily.

“I’m living here for nearly 20 years and I’m much better off.”

She depends on handouts from passers-by.

Soon after midday, when the Daily Voice went to check on William and his laundry, we learnt that he had been chased away by police.

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