‘Create spot for posters’

2015-09-25 10:49
An array of illegal posters cover any surface in the city centre.

An array of illegal posters cover any surface in the city centre. (Ian Carbutt, The Witness)

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Pietermaritzburg - Business owners and city residents are calling for allocated spots in Pietermaritzburg for poster advertising to reduce the “messy” situation they currently find themselves in.

Posters advertising all types of herbal remedies, events and safe abortions to name a few can be found plastered on any empty space and building in the CBD.

The Witness walked through the bustling Church Street in Pietermaritzburg and found more than 100 posters in a 50-metre radius.

Businesses in the area say they are fed up with the “ugly” posters defacing the walls of their buildings, some even saying they are losing business.

“No matter how hard we try to make the exterior of our businesses look nice and neat, the posters really destroy our hard work. Unfortunately we feel like there is nothing we can do about it and it is in the municipality’s hand,” said a business owner who did not want his name printed in the newspaper.

An employee of Phone Junction, Khurriam Sarwar, suggested the municipality create a specific area in the CBD to allow for businesses to stick up their posters.

“These posters are everywhere, and this is destroying the city’s buildings. There should be a place where small businesses can put them up and not wherever they want to,” said Sarwar.

Last week, Msunduzi Municipality slapped the company responsible for the removal of illegal signage with a notice of breach of contract. The city said they will use “Operation Susa Zonke” to clean up the city, including illegal posters.

The Witness called some of the businesses who advertise via posters in the city and found that many claimed they did not know they were acting illegally.

“I have never thought about it because nobody has ever approached me about my posters being put up on the street. What we are doing is not illegal as far as I know.

“We just want to promote our business and in a way we are helping the community by placing our posters over the ‘safe abortion’ posters,” said Thulani Dlamini, owner of laundromat and car wash Pine22.

He said his business is also advertised on social media such as Facebook but most customers respond to the poster advertisements.

Shoppers on Church Street said the adverts “make the city dirty” and some posters promote the wrong message.

“As much as these people are advertising, this is just not the right way of doing it as it makes Pietermaritzburg dirty.

“The ‘safe abortion’ posters are sending the wrong message to our children. Something should be done about this urgently,” said Bongiwe Nxele

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  litter

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