| PORT ELIZABETH

Motherwell residents watch garbage pile up for six months

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Residents claim dumping site last cleared in December

Photo of garbage
Rubbish piling up on Mokgatho Street, NU10, Motherwell. On the right is Buyelwa Tetani’s house. Photo: Joseph Chirume
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Residents in Motherwell in Port Elizabeth have been living next to piles of uncollected rubbish for the past six months they say. The mounds of garbage on Mokgatho Street, NU10, have started to encroach on people’s yards. The residents are now threatening to march to the municipal offices.

Buyelwa Tetani, who lives next to the mounting garbage, said: “This is an illegal dumping site and people from other areas come to dump their rubbish here. The place was last cleared by the municipality in December. I reported it on several occasions with no success.”

Tetani said dead dogs and animal skins were among the things dumped.

“We also have a problem with people who create fires at this place. The smoke always makes us cough. We no longer hang out our washed clothes because of the smoke … There is a bad smell all over this place,” said Tetani.

The 59-year-old grandmother said maggots bred in the rubbish and the dump attracted rats and scavenging dogs. She said she was also afraid the fires would burn her home down.

“If I had money, I would hire a truck to fetch all this rubbish. Unfortunately I am unemployed, so I cannot afford it,” she said.

Another resident, who did not wish to be named, said, “We have seen municipal trucks cleaning other dumping sites here in Motherwell. Why are they not doing the same with this place?”

The resident said they would embark on protest action if it was not cleared soon.

Spokesperson for Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality Kupido Baron asked for the exact street address so that he could “pass the information to our waste management department for action”. Subsequently, he said he was awaiting a response. 

UPDATE: Soon after publication of this article, Mayor Athol Trollip committed to having the waste removed within 72 hours.  

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TOPICS:  Sanitation