Dumpers defile city

2017-03-06 11:20
The pop-up dump site that appeared recently on Woodhouse Road near the Ascot Wedding and Conference Centre.

The pop-up dump site that appeared recently on Woodhouse Road near the Ascot Wedding and Conference Centre. (Supplied)

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The scourge of illegal dumping appears to be continuing unabated in the city. With the relaunched Witness Warriors column and a new e-mail address, it was obvious after a week that this is a major concern for the city’s residents.

Although three months into 2017, residents are still hopeful that this year can bring good changes to the city.

By reporting their worries to Witness Warriors and the municipality diligently, residents have said they hope everyone wakes up and smells the roses ... instead of the stench caused by illegal dumping throughout the city.

‘Let us love our city’

Msunduzi mayor Themba Njilo urged residents to start playing their part in the community and stop dumping on roadsides.

Recently, the mayor championed a clean-up operation but he said as soon as he turned his back, the rubbish was back.

“We need to stick to the municipal collection days and not dump everywhere else. Let us love our city,” he said.

He said that the municipality tries its level best but it needed the community and the residents to meet it half way, which is a valid point. If we want a clean city, we need to start taking responsibility for it.

Old Greytown Road a dumpsite

Kay Govender said the municipality should focus its resources on the environment criminals who operate under the cover of darkness.

The area on Old Greytown Road, a buffer zone between Mshwati and Msunduzi municipalities, has become a prime spot for those who dump their waste on the roadside.

The road has become almost impossible to travel on if there is oncoming traffic as the “dumpsite” has taken over most of the lane on either side.

Pop-up dump sites

Stacy Graham of Ascot Wedding and Conference Venue said much like the recent craze of pop-up shops, dump sites have also “popped up”.

Almost directly opposite the well-known wedding venue, a dump site has appeared with a man claiming the land as his and living in the building on the property. Graham said the man has since opened up “his land” to a businessman to dump waste.

Although the title deed owners of the land are dealing with the land invasion, Graham said the clearing of the pop-up dump site could be done sooner.

“We approached the municipality but have been sent from pillar to post with this issue.

“My fiancé met with a gentleman from the municipality on site who says there is nothing he can do about it. We have emailed people in the municipality pictures and letters of concern. We have had no response,” Graham said.

The problem is the huge health and security risk it brings.

She said the Pietermaritzburg SPCA complained that the dump was attracting rats which are now eating the dogs’ food at the SPCA as well as pestering the animals.

“This dump site is surrounded by many B&Bs, a hospital and a conference centre.

“The stench that comes from this dump is terrible, especially on a hot day. It is attracting flies like you have no idea and is attracting dump collectors which we see as a security risk to us,” Graham said.

Filth on Coronation Road

Scottsville resident Cheryl Yeoman said the litter and dumping on Coronation Road was “disgusting” and left only a small portion of the pavement available for pedestrians to walk on.

Pedestrians are forced to walk on the busy road due to the litter, long grass and uneven surfaces.

“Many motorists speed along this road and it is only a matter of time before a pedestrian is knocked over,” said Yeoman.

It seems the Coronation Road filth has been a problem since June last year.

Jackie Robinson and her colleagues at the Institute of Natural Resources, whose offices are on Coronation Road, have raised the matter since then.

“The state of Coronation Road is shocking and our executive director and I have been trying to get this matter sorted out but with no success,” Robinson said.

She said that “many months ago”, the municipality dug trenches along the road, which have not been filled, and so are now full of litter and waste.

“I am at my wits’ end as to how to get this matter rectified,” she said.

Janet Edwards of Bulwer Street recently praised the municipality for cleaning up Miller Street but said it only lasted about a week before people “rubbished” the area again.

Edwards pleaded with residents and passers-by to chuck their rubbish into bins and not leave the municipal cleaners to pick up after them.

“I must say that the ... long suffering cleaning staff do a wonderful job but in South Africa people seem to believe that they are creating jobs for others by throwing their rubbish in the gutters,” she said.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  witness warrior

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