Cape's faeces war inhumane - Motsoaledi

2013-06-27 13:24
(Nadia Krige: News24 Travel)

(Nadia Krige: News24 Travel)

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Johannesburg - Dumping human waste during protests in Cape Town is an "attack against the whole population", Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi said on Thursday.

Breaking his silence on the protests against flushable portable toilets, Motsoaledi said: "What is currently happening in the Western Cape defies all manner of logic and it is outright inhumane."

His sentiments - expressed in a media statement - came as nine people were expected to appear in court for allegedly dumping human faeces at the Cape Town International Airport departures terminal.

The nine, two of them reportedly ANC members facing party disciplinary action for similar offences, were arrested on Tuesday.

"The type of action going on in the Western Cape can no longer be considered as a protest against those who are responsible for not providing services, but is a direct attack against the whole population, and will affect even the innocent people in whose name the actions are undertaken," Motsoaledi said.

The poor - and not the "well to do" - would be the worst affected should a disease break out as a result of the protests.

"For this reason, we call upon the law enforcement agencies to take stern action against those involved, without any compromise, because the whole population must be protected against possible health hazards that may emanate from these irresponsible actions," the minister said.

Sanitation concerns

Motsoaledi called on the City of Cape Town and other departments to look into the concerns raised by protesters regarding sanitation and sewerage.

Despite the frustration among community members demanding better sewerage facilities, dumping human faeces was not the answer.

"Human faeces contain deadly micro-organisms - like viruses, bacteria or larvae of parasites - that can cause serious outbreak of diseases, such as, but not limited to, cholera, typhoid, dysentery, parasitic diseases and even just simple diarrhoea on a wide scale."

The entire population was at risk, he said.

Protesters claimed portable toilets had not been cleaned for months.

The city, in turn, said it was being prevented from servicing the toilets.

Read more on:    anc  |  aaron motsoaledi  |  cape town  |  health  |  protest

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