Kouga’s refuse collectors are tops

2016-03-10 06:00
Leading the Humansdorp refuse collection team is Kouga Municipality Cleansing and Parks Acting Manager Frank Tamboer (left). The dedicated and hard-working team are (front) Julie Geswint, Pieter Goeda, Collin Goeda, Pieter Felix, Zamuxolo Dlongwe, (back) Neville Geswint and Thamsanqa Jacobs.                                                                                  Photo: SUPPLIED

Leading the Humansdorp refuse collection team is Kouga Municipality Cleansing and Parks Acting Manager Frank Tamboer (left). The dedicated and hard-working team are (front) Julie Geswint, Pieter Goeda, Collin Goeda, Pieter Felix, Zamuxolo Dlongwe, (back) Neville Geswint and Thamsanqa Jacobs. Photo: SUPPLIED

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WORKING early hours. Lifting heavy, smelly bins. Dealing with customer complaints. Operating difficult equipment.

These tasks and more are what garbage collectors are faced with on a day-to-day basis - no matter the weather conditions. Despite being deemed by many as a ‘smelly job’, the refuse collection team of Kouga has proven over-and-over that with them there is no mucking about with waste collection.

These dedicated and hard-working men and women, who often go beyond their duties to demonstrate work that is awe-inspiring - came out tops in the recent Citizen Satisfaction Survey that is conducted by the Kouga Municipality on a yearly basis - making a lasting impression on the communities they serve.

According to municipal spokesperson, Mfundo Sobele, there are approximately 168 members in the refuse collection sub-section across Kouga. This includes litter pickers and street sweepers. These men and women, who often do not get the necessary recognition - are led by eight foremen and four truck drivers.

Contributing to their success are monthly meetings with workers to discuss the different work schedules, listening to problems and to source buy-in from employees as agents of change.

“This is how we keep our wagon moving,” says Sobele.

“The different teams cover about 20 266 formal households, some 5 600 informal dwel-lings and close to 600 businesses across Kouga.”

But it is not always an easy task.

“One of the challenges they face is breakdowns of vehicles when demand levels rise, particularly during the festive period,” says Sobele. “To compensate for this, the municipality hires additional vehicles when needed.”

Other challenges include residents taking out their domestic waste before or after the scheduled days for their area, as well as illegal dumping.

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