Residents demand action from the City

2019-10-10 06:01
Piles of rubbish along Sheffield Road near Marikana.PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

Piles of rubbish along Sheffield Road near Marikana.PHOTO: UNATHI OBOSE

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Marikana residents are appealing to the City of Cape Town to speed up the process of hiring a new cleaning company to avert a potential health hazard.

They claim it has been nearly six weeks since rubbish was last collected in the area.

Community leader Siwaphiwe Dolophu said the conditions in the neighbourhood are deteriorating daily.

He accused the City of dragging their feet in resolving the problem. “The new company was supposed to start collecting the rubbish at the beginning of September but they didn’t.

“We had a problem with the names that were selected by the City from the database. We noticed that in one family there were about three people hired,” said Dolophu adding they want the company to hire one person in a family so the whole community can benefit.

Dolophu alleged that out of 75 people that were supposed to be hired in Marikana the City came with a suggestion to only employ 28 people who had already been screened to work while waiting for the rest to be screened.

“We rejected the proposal and told City officials that we want all of them to start at the same time,” he said.

When City Vision visited the area, piles of rubbish were covering the sidewalks and parts of Sheffield Road.

Ward 35 councillor Mboniswa Chitha said he is aware of the conditions in Marikana citing they are depending on the City to resolve the problem.

He said he is concerned about the health of the people who reside in the area. “ There is no way that people can live in that squalor,” he said adding that he is planning to organise a meeting with City officials to discuss the matter but didn’t specify when.

Mayoral committee member for urban management Grant Twigg said leaders in some informal settlements are preventing the City from cleaning their communities which poses serious health risks.

“Some leaders are unhappy and are attempting to interfere in the employment processes of the City’s extended public works programme (EPWP).

“The problem has been exacerbated by the internal tension and conflict between the community and their elected leaders,” said Twigg.

He said they have been engaging with the other affected communities and their nominated leaders since the beginning of August but have been unable to reach an agreement.

“We will continue to engage with the other affected communities and in the interests of the health and safety of our residents.

“We are urging the leadership to allow a clean-up of the areas to take place while we continue to engage and resolve the issues,” he said.

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