Ruined rivers’ rehab back on

2015-09-29 06:00
The well-known, polluted Bokmakierie River flows along Jan Smuts Drive towards the N2.

Earl Haupt

The well-known, polluted Bokmakierie River flows along Jan Smuts Drive towards the N2. PHOTO: Earl Haupt

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Subcouncil 11 has adopted a motion to develop solid waste drop-off sites in Hazendal and Kewtown or Silvertown.

The motion stems from an undertaking by the City of Cape Town to address the illegal dumping of solid waste in rivers, canals and public spaces.

Ward councillor for the area Suzette Little says that despite her repeated requests, nothing has been done to get rid of the litter and solid waste in At­hlone’s four main rivers (the Bokmakierie, Blomvlei, Jakkalsvlei and Vygieskraal rivers) as a result of illegal dumping.

Emails dating back to 2011 explain that the Bokmakierie River would be used as a pilot project in which a holistic approach would be adopted. The collaborative effort was intended to create awareness at schools in the area about the health risks of illegal dumping, involve law enforcement officials to curb the frequency of illegal dumping into the river as well as develop a solid waste drop-off site in Bokmakierie itself.

Costly to useThe current solid waste drop-off site for the area is situated off the N2 near the site of the old cooling towers.

However, the City says that residents in the area have to incur transport costs to dispose of their solid waste, so they feel discouraged to follow the legal process of getting rid of their waste and resort to illegal dumping.

Little maintained in the subcouncil meeting that these sites would let the community use the river in a more productive way.

Meanwhile, another motion for ward 49 was adopted by the subcouncil to carry out repairs and maintenance on rented flats owned by the City in Kewtown.

The reason for the motion, according to Little, is to minimise fire risk and improve safety following an increase in gang violence in the area over the last five years.

The maintenance will include the implementation of a number of safety measures, such as the installation of fire extinguishers in each block of flats in Kewtown. The rubbish bin huts should also be cleared to have only the City’s black bins left behind.

Other measures which will be put forward to the City council are to have graffiti removed from stairwells of the flats, with signage to go up at every entrance to instruct those entering of the prohibition on activities in the stairwells.

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