Cape Town goes after rats

2013-03-20 14:30

Johannesburg - The City of Cape Town was taking steps to go after the municipality's rat population, the City said on Wednesday.

"As with all large cities throughout the world with an ever increasing population, the problem of rat infestation in Cape Town is a reality, but steps are being taken by the City to curb the problem," said health spokesperson Lungiswa James in a statement.

"The primary cause of rat infestation is the prevalence of food waste."

James said in areas with high rat populations, it had been found that some residents dumped their rubbish next to collection bins rather than inside them, or left their rubbish out for days before collection day.

The city had appointed waste contractors to collect waste in both formal and informal areas, provided rodent-proof dumping containers, and performed on-going community and school education on waste management.

"Baiting has been increased over the last few years, particularly in the breeding seasons of spring and autumn," said James.

The municipality had budgeted R530 843 for rat poisons, with this amount excluding salaries and vehicle costs for teams doing the block baiting.

Special pest control partnerships had been undertaken in areas well known to be affected by rodents and a complaints-based pest control service was provided to previously disadvantaged communities.

Business premises such as hotels, restaurants and food outlets were routinely visited by environmental health practitioners and where rodent control was found to be inadequate, the business owner is asked to fix the situation.

Public partnership

The City had also engaged in a public-private partnership project within the CBD to reduce the rodent population.

"We appeal to residents to help us curb the rat problem by keeping their area clean of all solid waste, and by disposing of waste correctly," James said.

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille took to social networking site Twitter to announce that she had been bitten by a rat, The Star reported.

Zille tweeted her 251 000 followers around 06:00 on Tuesday: The weirdest thing just happened. I went to fetch the newspapers at the gate when a rat darted out, and bit me on my toe!

This was retweeted 268 times.

Her followers on Twitter were quick to chime in with advice and suggestions that included go to the doctor, improve security at her Leeuwenhof home, and post a photo.

Later Zille posted: I have just looked up on Google. It says no one in the US has ever got rabies from a small rodent. But I will ask my doctor. tks for advice.

Soon afterwards she uploaded a photograph of her toe.

Her spokesperson Zak Mbhele tweeted: I know the City Bowl rats are mutant freaks of nature, but if they're starting to take nibbles out of people, we're in trouble...

  • Glenda Gert - 2013-03-20 14:47

    So Madame gets bitten by a rat and the city works on it? Heh heh heh tell me if this does not stink of political privilege? Tax payers money is now being channelled to a certain project just because a senior politician was a bitten by a rat. All political leaders are the same.

      Michael Heys - 2013-03-20 15:14

      So what about Zuma's R220 million Nkandla upgrade??? Getting rid of the rats benefits everbody. How many people benefit from the Nkandla upgrade???

      Farzana Rahiman - 2013-03-20 15:44

      glenda have u SEEN the rats in town??? i work with povety striken kids, have u SEEn a child bitten by rats??? just because its now being highlighted doesnt mean they havnt been attempting to rid cptn of em, wake up, dont have rodent mentality!

      Michael Heys - 2013-03-20 15:49

      Obviously you can't read very well otherwise you would have seen that this had already been budgetted for and was an ongoing programme.They didn't take all these actions the same day Zille was bitten.

      Glenda Gert - 2013-03-20 16:02

      Whether you like it or not. The issue is getting attention because a senior politician was affected. How many Vusi's Gugu's and Steenkamp's were bitten by rats before and this never got enough attention? Trust me more money will be channelled into this project. You should see through what our senior politicians are not what they feed you. I still stand by my statement that all politicians are the same.

      Klaus Muller - 2013-03-20 16:18

      @Glenda, news to me, wearing panties make you scream? Must be married to wrong woman :-)))

      rhino - 2013-03-20 16:22

      Glenda I went on to your facebook. You look bad on your FB profile. Please change.

      1amAlan - 2013-03-20 17:43

      Oh dear Glenda, if this is what it took, as you may think, I laud tat rat that bit her as this is a project I will support. I certainly don't see HZ erecting a R9 million wall to protect herself from the rats. I certainly don't notice her spending millions more on security and bodyguards to protect her from the rats. You really need to get that chip off your shoulder.

  • Rolanda Julius - 2013-03-20 14:52

    Silly spokesperson. pls consult a scientist. These rats don't breed only in spring and autumn- they breed all year round as food and shelter is freely available

      Pfarelos Grace Tshivhandekano - 2013-03-20 15:38

      we right what we like,lol

  • Rupert Van Der Merwe - 2013-03-20 14:55

    Problem can be solved

      Rolanda Julius - 2013-03-20 15:05

      Although this seems to be a very interesting project, food availability however,is not the only reason for this increased abundance of rats.

  • themba.maseko.568 - 2013-03-20 14:58

    " As with all large cities throughout the world with an ever increasing population, the problem of rat infestation in Cape Town is a reality" - nice justication for allowing the problem to happen in the first place. If it was in the ANC area, you would have had so many negative comments. But its quiet...

  • Tlotlo Phele - 2013-03-20 14:59

    Lol cape rats are misbehaving,

  • Tso Waka Mokoena - 2013-03-20 15:05

    suddenly thre is money 4 rats chasing,mxm our money is being misused.

      Michael Heys - 2013-03-20 15:15

      Do you like rats? Was our money misused for Nkandla???

      Vin Savage - 2013-03-20 16:16

      @Tso - do you have any idea how completely STUPID you sound!! Moron!!

  • Boyisile Stya Dikela Mafilika - 2013-03-20 15:09

    Come to Cape Flats and see how these rats destroy people's groceries.Worse during late hours they come out from Council drains in numbers as if they are ready for any action.Cats are nothing to the type of rats we have in the Cape Flats.

  • Cosmic Wisdom Love - 2013-03-20 15:16

    Is that really Helen's toe's? Sjoe ... ;0)

  • Nokukhanya Ngcongo - 2013-03-20 15:17

    Is she cleaning up thse rats now tht she's bin bitten? Or was she gonna try fix problem?

      Badger - 2013-03-20 16:02

      Already been doing it for years. Read the article. Oh Hang On, you one of the 30% pass rate graduates ???????

  • siyabonga.khumalo.108 - 2013-03-20 15:23


  • Junior Mahlo - 2013-03-20 15:24

    Honestly this problem is being addressed because Madam was bitten, unluckily corruption is not a wild animal, if it was i was going to send it to Nkandla

  • Hasani Booysen Hlungwana - 2013-03-20 15:28

    At Tembisa, Alex and Hillbrow we are out numbered by rats., but nothing is been done to get rid of rats..

      Victor Luiz - 2013-03-20 15:48

      Remind me which political party is in charge there?

      Badger - 2013-03-20 16:04

      Stop throwing your garbage on the streets and the rats will go away and seek a food source else where. A simple priciple of pride in your enviroment and home. Troll

  • Garrick Dunstan - 2013-03-20 15:29

    It's her foot finger

  • deon.duplessis.144 - 2013-03-20 15:30

    O@Tso, Uhmmmm, so let me see if I got this right, you'd rather have rats invest and take over your city, than "waste" money on preventing the outbreak of rodents? Ok, ma'bad, then I suppose it would be better to rather spend the money on the real important things like, changing street names, building memorial parks, the Gautrain and of course the ever important Nkandla, you know, all those REALLY important stuff the government has been p!ssing our tax money away on. Who the heck needs to prevent an infestation or pandemic breakout? After all, if it does happen, we could do what the goverment are master at, and that is to simply ignore the problem for a while, and with a little bit of luck, it will simply go away.

  • Selai Thomas Maine - 2013-03-20 15:31

    i thnk we shud appoint a probe into da allegatiƶns dat rats bites corrupt n dishonest politicians...wu's with me on dis? I hope its start hre in cptn n goes up 2 limpopo.

  • Freddie Williams - 2013-03-20 15:44

    "City of Cape Town" please take the poisoning out of the equation.

  • nicholus.nakanyane - 2013-03-20 15:46

    Please..please after u finishd that side swing by my place..i have the same problem and this rat poison doesnt work,they only get constipated and after 2days they back to work...

  • Tlotlo Phele - 2013-03-20 16:04

    That rat must have commited suicide

      Simphiwe Charlie - 2013-03-20 16:27

      I think the rat got rabies.

      Lwando Memani - 2013-03-20 16:34

      No rat can bite such an ugly toe and live to see another day

  • Mordikaai Speak - 2013-03-20 16:17

    Get some cats its all that works

  • wanda.novukela - 2013-03-20 16:42

    How coincidental.. Article shoulf read, 'Toe takes a bite for the nation'

  • Jenny van der Hoff - 2013-03-20 16:58

    PLEASE do not use poisons. Use RAPTORS - I am sure there are many falconers who would LOVE to assist - POISONS DO NOT WORK AND ARE DANGEROUS

      Theunis Botha - 2013-03-21 00:35

      'Tis why I keep a few black mambas,cape cobras and puff adders in me house,because those rats kicked the living daylights out of them falcons when they are high on tik.

  • lionel.schultz.1 - 2013-03-20 17:02

    I assume this includes the rat Marius Fransman.

  • Kleurling Man Bushy - 2013-03-20 17:18

    now only they want to attack the Rat issue,why?its simple because a white Maddam was attacked omg white power!

  • Albert Els - 2013-03-20 20:17

    All politicians are bottom feeding rats

  • Khanyo Ngwane - 2013-03-21 01:37

    Shoo, those toes are rat material.

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