Zašto u Nišu nema Planova detaljne regulacije za romska naselja?
U Nišu postoje 5 naselja u kojima žive pripadnici romske zajednice, Beograd mala, Stočni trg, Jevrejsko groblje, 12. februar, Čair mala. Ova naselja su obuhvaćena Generalnim urbanističkim planom, međutim uređivanje infrastrukture unutar naselja bez Plana detaljne regulacije nije moguće! U razgovoru sa sagovornicima saznali smo da će neka naselja biti sagledana kroz Planove detaljne regulacije, dok će ostala morati biti raseljena! Zašto se toliko čekalo sa planskom dokumentacijom ako znamo da su romska naselja stara i do 100 godina u Nišu?
„Izradu ovog video-materijala omogućio je Fond za jug Srbije. Sadržaj i stavovi izneti u ovom video-materijalu predstavljaju stavove autora projekta “Stanovanje Roma u Nišu” i nužno ne izražavaju stavove Fonda za jug Srbije.“
Why there are no Detailed Regulation Plans for Roma settlements in Nis?
There are 5 settlements in Niš in which members of the Roma community live, Beograd mahala, Stočni trg, Jevresko groblje, February 12, Cair Mala. These settlements are covered by the General Urban Plan, however, it is not possible to arrange infrastructure within the settlements without a Detailed Regulation Plan! Talking to the interlocutors, we learned that some settlements will be viewed through Detailed Regulation Plans, while others will have to be displaced! Why is there so much waiting with planning documentation if we know that Roma settlements are up to 100 years old in Niš?
BEOGRAD MALA, CITY MUNICIPALITY CRVENI KRST
Alija Saćipović, resident of Beograd Mala settlement:
“Roma settled on the right side of Nišava bank, in the so-called present Beograd Mahala on the road to Belgrade, which is why it is called Beograd Mahala, Belgrade quarter mahala. They were living at the outskirts of the right side of the Nišava river, behind, if we may call it, sewerage network, the wastewater.They used to live there in all kinds of settlements. They used to be blacksmiths, entertainers, and so on. Still, the town was growing, and the Roma population was growing, too, and 100 years ago Beograd Mahala used to be, and it still is, the largest settlement of Roma population. It is very important to say that mahalas usually were not monoethnic. The Roma were always living together with Serbian population, Jewish population, and they used to live extremely well, they got along great. In 18th and 19th century, many Roma people spoke good Serbian, and of course, the Serbs spoke good Romani, and that Serbian ethnos and Roma ethnos were very close. As they got jobs, Roma people started constructing those settlements, or that mahala, Beograd Mahala, as much as they could afford, which is why in this 21st century we have great apartments that the Roma financed and constructed themselves. Still, nothing was done with the Detailed Urban Plan of the City of Niš.“
- FEBRUAR SETTLEMENT, CITY MUNICIPALITY CRVENI KRST
Ismet Asić, resident of 12. februar settlement:
“This settlement was formed in 1945, but in 1950s the workers of the Machine Industry used to live there, they were the temporary residents. There were some stables or something, I don’t know… nevermind, they adapted them for the workers who came from villages and lived there temporarily. From 1973 or 1974, some of these workers got the apartments, and some of them remained there. What happened? The City of Niš, Niš municipality cooperated with the Machine Industry, so people who were social cases used to get the temporary accomodation, agreement on use of temporary accomodation, agreement on use of apartments, but on temporary basis. So until a house or an apartment was ready for them, they had these agreements on use of apartments. They used to get those agreements. So, they lived here for some time as this used to be the center of the Industrial Zone. We used to be surrounded with diseases and radioactive matters as far as I know… there’s this repeater, or whatever it is called, and they made there, without our approval, that repeater of MTS. It’s killing us. This substation here is killing us, it is over 10,000, over 10,000 volts and maybe more. There’s Monikum dealing with coal processing. There we also have a lot of problems. About a hundred meters away there’s a tobacco factory, and when the tobacco starts evaporating, it’s simply unbarable.“
Miroslav Milutinović, President of the City Municipality:
“One part was regulated with the general planning documentation, it is the first phase, from Ovčepoljska street up, and this second part with Moravska street, access roads and the lower part, we initiated the development of the plan, the detailed regulation plan, it was submitted to the City and the City needs to develop those planning documents and the City Assembly needs to adopt them in the end. We hope it will be resolved, so we could do something for our fellow citizens, so that their demands regarding construction will be met, although there will be a lot of problems later on, as we know that none of the property ownership issues are resolved with Ovčepoljska street and access 1 and access 2, Moravska street access 1, Ražanjska street, which means it is the second part we will have to solve so that the final asphalting and regulation of the streets with sewerage, water, asphalting would happen, all in accordance with our regulations.“
Journalist: “And this other settlement, 12. februar?“
Milutinović: “There are plans for 12. februar, but as I said, the greatest issue is the issue of property ownership. It should be resolved…we have submitted the request to our Urban Planning Department to asphalt and regulate those streets…“
STOČNI TRG SETTLEMENT, CITY MUNICIPALITY PALILULA
Arif Ismailović, resident of Stočni trg settlement:
“ Stočni trg settlement was founded back in 1924, 1925 when there were about five or six families there. These were educated people. There was this late Emin who was an engine driver in Niš. He was there, his brother also, then an old man Ismail, my grandfather…then there was the Balić family, the family of Salit Balić.
In 1948, during the flood, there were 48 legalized houses“
Journalist: “Are you saying that there were houses with the documents, with the deed?“
Ismailović: “That’s right, 48 legalized houses. There were about 240 residents. In 1952, the settlement was increased for another 35 houses. And those were ramshackle houses, made of adobe bricks, mud, there were no blocks that we have now…
JEWISH CEMETERY (JEVREJSKO GROBLJE)
Jevrejsko groblje was the cemetery of… it is the Jewish cemetery. There was an old man there, Selman or something…I know that his last name is Zejnelović. There was this house in which a man was living with his family, taking care of that cemetery. There were no other houses at all.
Journalist: “What year was that?“
Ismailović: “1957, 1958, something like that. His brother moved there later, and then his brother-in-law, and so the settlement started growing with that construction.
Journalist: “Do you know how many residents are there now both in Jevrejsko groblje and Stočni trg?“
Ismailović: “In 2000, I took part in the Census, and according to those data, there were 280 houses and 1680 adult residents.“
CRVENA ZVEZDA SETTLEMENT, CITY MUNICIPALITY PALILULA
Bajazit Ramić, resident of Crvena Zvezda settlement:
“This settlement was established in 1961. There used to be only 5 buildings then. Five buildings times 6 residents, so there were 6 families. There were about 30 people there. And there were 2, 3 auxiliary buildings behind. So there were about 65 residents in total. So these 5, 6 buildings mostly had agreements on the use of apartments…it was mixed…Serbs and Gypsies. Serbs got all the apartments, and Gypsies remained. I have a family, four children. They will grow up one day …The 6 of us cannot live in 2 rooms, plus a son-in-law or a daughter-in-law. So, the settlement was expanding. These were mostly our people from the settlement who were expanding, making houses, adding extra space, children were growing. Here there are at least three, four, if not five generations of people living here since 1961. And there are about 120 houses now, and there must be about 700 people.”
Nikola Lečić, Head of Urban Planning Department of the City:
“Construction are of Niš covers about 161 km2 and it is divided in 22 spatial units. The City of Niš, like other cities and municipalities in Serbia, was obliged to draft planning documents to be directly enforceable as much as possible, meaning that there would be an option of direct obtaining of construction permits for the construction area defined by the General Urban Plan. For public areas, public traffic areas, and other types of land. Informal settlements, as we frequently call them, are covered by these planning documents along with other areas. So, yes, the areas you inquired about are covered by planning documents, and based on these planning documents, it is possible to build infrastructure on these locations, like roads and other necessary infrastructure, and it is possible to obtain information about the location, construction permit for areas on other types of land, within the informal settlements you mentioned.“
Igor Igić, Secretary of the Urban Planning and Construction Department:
“This regulation of informal settlements can be developed; it is possible to include all these facilities in the making of the Detailed Regulation Plan. However, regarding the Roma settlements in particular, there are some zones that may not be resolved like that, but maybe some settlements could be displaced, moved out through the implementation of the Law on Housing and Building Maintenance. Of course, the accommodation for those people must be provided. For example, one of the Roma settlements is the Crvena Zvezda settlement. It is included in the general regulation plan of the City Municipality Palilula, phase II. Still, that settlement, I opened the documents, is in the commercial area and on the land that is not…it is owned by a private person, so it is not planned to keep the settlement on that land. So, in cooperation, of course, with some existing projects we will try to find a better location to move the people living there, of course in cooperation with them. Another example is the Stočni trg settlement. There is a plan there. A part of the settlement is planned for housing, and we can provide infrastructure, legalize the facilities and resolve their issue. Still, another part of that settlement might be around the Jewish cemetery, and people from that part will have to be displaced. Also, Beograd Mala. Detailed Regulation Plan of Crveni Krst, phase I, stipulates a more detailed development, and it may be one of the priorities of the City to adopt that Detailed Regulation Plan where we will include all the facilities that may be legal or illegal, and provide infrastructure for those facilities.“
Dragan Djordjević, Human Rights Committee, Niš:
“Unfortunately, this confirms that some things regarding Roma settlements are not finished, although the City puts a lot of effort into it. With the Detailed Regulation Plan you take on a part of obligations, too. I’m afraid that the answer why it has not been done so far lies there, except for the message – o.k., maybe it’s temporary, maybe that Roma settlement won’t be there tomorrow, but there is the City’s responsibility for every family, every facility, so it is another bad message concerning Roma community and our fellow-citizens.“
Prof Djokica Jovanović, Sociologist:
“Old Roma settlements, like Beograd Mala, also represent cultural and historical values. We must not forget it. Look at other cities in the world taking care of their old city cores, old city quarters, which are not destroyed but maintained well. Think of Chinese quarters in many parts of the world. Therefore, the old Roma settlements for me represent an integral part of cultural and historical heritage. Let me put it simply – without Beograd Mala, Niš is not Niš. That is why I believe that the Detailed Urban Plan is needed for those settlements that should be proclaimed cultural and historical units, as they have the cultural and historical significance.“
“The creation of this video was made possible by the South Serbia Fund. The content and views expressed in this video represent the views of the authors of the project “Housing Roma in Nis” and do not necessarily reflect those of the South Serbia Fund. “