Sunday 17 October 2010

Thousands of Buildings Now Public Housing May be Privatized

From Oct. 15-17, members of ZSP Warsaw delivered notices to over 1000 buildings in Warsaw informing the tenants that their buildings, now public housing, may be privatized. Currently there are claims for close to 10,000 buildings in the city - tens of thousands of people living in public housing may be effected and soon face drastic rent increases or eviction.

The information on which buildings in the center of Warsaw already have cases in court concerning their reprivatization came from a classified document which we received. See the press release below.

Oct. 13, 2010

On the Publication of the City's Secret Report

On Oct. 13, tenants' activists informed the press of the existence of a secret report compiled by the city administration, deliberately hidden from the public. The report, which "wandered out of city hall", is a list of buildings in the Downtown (Srodmiejsce) adminstrative district of Warsaw towards which court cases concerning "reprivatization" have been initiated.

The information therein is not protected in any way by any regulations on data
protection . Furthermore, as adminstrative procedures initiated towards housing which is currently municipal, this information should be publically accessible, as should any report made by public institutions and paid for with public funds.

We have provided the press and the public with documentation attesting to the fact that on more than one occasion we have asked, in accordance with the Act on Access to Public Information, for such a list. We received answers claiming that no such report exists.

We have asked the city, on more than one occassion, documented in the stenograms of the City Council, to compile such a report. On Sept. 30, Vice President Jakubiak, during the session of the City Council, was asked if such a report existed. He replied "no". Tenants organizations again asked that such a list be compiled and made available on the official web pages of the city.

However, Jakubiak was not telling the truth and now we have the report in our hands. It is 60 pages long and concerns over 1500 buildings in the Downtown of Warsaw.

ZSP declares that it will publish this report and will personally bring this information to each building on this list. What is more, we will absolutely reject any claim that this information is confidential in any way; it does not qualify as such under the administrative law of this city. Therefore, we will not hide ourselves and publish it on Wikileaks, but on our pages and the pages of the tenants' groups we cooperate with. We will not be threatened by any bureaucrats or lawyers and will not remove it. If the city continues to refuse to make public information available to citizens, we will do anything necessary to obtain this information ourselves and get it into the hands of the people it concerns.

The residents of each building indicated on the list will receive information on this
process, which may result in the loss of housing for thousands of families. And they will be informed, in plenty of time before elections, which politicians and
adminstrators are involved in the conspiracy to keep such vital information from the people and will be invited to join both the rent strike and upcoming direct actions against politicians and city administrators.

We will continue to take direct action against the state which participates in banditism in the name of the primacy of inherited property, against the administration which conspires with speculators and refuses to be accountable to inhabitants, against the slumlords, both private and municipal, who profit while keeping the people in squalor and misery and against the whole system of governance and landlordism.

ZSP Warsaw