Pietermaritzburg acts against clean-up firm

2015-09-15 10:16
A man walks past a wall of posters on the corner of West and Pietermaritz streets. (Ian Carbutt, The Witness)

A man walks past a wall of posters on the corner of West and Pietermaritz streets. (Ian Carbutt, The Witness)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Pietermaritzburg - The city has slapped the company responsible for the removal of outdated and illegal signage with a notice of breach of contract after months of inaction.

But while the city and Tutu Communications are embroiled in a legal tussle, the CBD and other areas continue to be overwhelmed with illegal signs and posters.

The executive committee of the Msunduzi Municipality says the Gauteng-based company has not been performing its duties and expect it to “remedy all items of breach”.

However, DA councillor Rodger Ashe says the Tutu Communications contract should have been cancelled a long time ago.

“I am not surprised that this company was served a notice of breach. They are not doing a good job yet they are getting paid,” said Ashe.

He said following the notice of breach, he hopes the council “does the right thing and cancels their contract”.

Tutu Communications, known for its ambient advertising for Telkom and 8-ta, has been contracted by the municipality since January 2013.

Apart from taking charge of street advertising in the city, the company was also tasked with cleaning up all illegal and unauthorised advertising signage.

“People are doing as they like in Msunduzi and no one seems worried about the by-laws. I would love to know how many people or companies have been prosecuted for these illegal activities in breach of our city’s by-laws,” said Ashe.

It is unclear how much Tutu Communications was being paid every month; the terms of the contract; when last it provided a service to the city; and whether it had in fact fined anyone for breaching the city’s by-laws.

When The Witness posed these questions to city spokesperson Nqobile Madonda, she responded by saying the matter is confidential.

“Any comments made by the municipality may result in legal action,” she said.

The municipality says they have conducted investigations into all departments with regards to illegal operations in the city and will use “Operation Susa Zonke” to clean up the city.

Operation Susa Zonke is the city’s strategy to clean up Msunduzi’s streets of all illegal activities including illegal signage, the removal of scrap metal and illegal structures.

The operation will also see the creation of a dedicated lane for pedestrians.

The council said they will be tackling all illegal buildings, tuck shops, taverns and illegal motor mechanics operating in the city.

“This activity creates a very untidy situation as well as being a danger to motorists and pedestrians,” read the report to council.

The municipal traffic and security department said they will be removing vehicles that cause a “wilful obstruction” immediately.

In other cases, traffic officers will consult with the panel beaters and informal motor-mechanics and thereafter they will be served notice, and if there is still no result the vehicle will be towed away.

Pedestrians were also taken into account when the city approved a non-motorised transportation (NMT) plan to create a lane on the road dedicated for foot traffic only.

“The NMT does not talk to closure of lanes since roadways are already constrained. External spaces along the road, but within the road reserve must be found or expropriation of land may be required,” read the report to council.

Municipal manager Mxolisi Nkosi said the resolution of these issues will contribute greatly to service delivery to the ratepayers in the city.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.