FET campus students plagued by rats

2018-06-27 06:00
The rubbish pile up next to the FET College on Pietermaritz Street which has been housing rats that frequent the campus. PHOTO: byrone athman

The rubbish pile up next to the FET College on Pietermaritz Street which has been housing rats that frequent the campus. PHOTO: byrone athman

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AN infestation of rodents is what students of the Umgungundlovu FET College face on a daily basis, which they claim is due to the presence of a recycling plant next door to them.

Students say that they have to deal with rats either crawling in the ceiling during lectures, or scurrying through the campus during the day in search of food.

“Most days we come across dead rats on the campus, or live ones running around ,” said a student.

One lecturer who wished to remain anonymous said that, since the recycling centre popped up in the central business district, they have been plagued with various issues such as pollution, pests, and vagrants.

“I am not sure if the area is zoned for such activity but it has attracted a lot of vagrants to the area as they bring plastic for recycling,” said the lecturer.

He said that, although this was a good gesture in helping clean up the city, it is attracting large numbers of rats due to the accumulation of waste. The lecturer said that rats are now in the roof and all around the campus, possibly carrying diseases and germs which could affect students and lecturers. The land on which the recycling plant is operating has also attracted vagrants who have occupied the back of the plot where empty ruins remain.

One of these vagrants was apparently stabbed after getting into a scuffle in the beginning of the academic year.

“During the summer months, the stench coming from the place is horrible because there are no toilet facilities where the vagrants stay and the place has become a dump in the back,” said one student.

Another lecturer said that they hoped, by exposing the place, it would either be moved away from their campus or be cleaned up.

“I hope that the awareness will highlight the health hazard and have it moved to a more suitable location,” said the lecturer.

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