Illegal refuse dumping remains an issue

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GK CRONJE

22 February 2022

The warning from MLM had been laughed off, and the refuse dumping has, in fact, increased exponentially.

Despite attempts by the business chamber to curb the illegal dumping of refuse in wards, the Chris de Villiers Street roadside, as well as the adjacent fields on both sides, are still strewn with literal mounds of refuse, discarded building materials and a considerable amount of fast food containers. Dubious behavior from the surrounding residents and contractors sees them conducting regular illegal dumping activities in this area, which has been an issue since 2014.

The issue has been reported to the call centre on numerous occasions, with no response from Msukaligwa Local Municipality (MLM). “Illegal dumping in Msukaligwa is the problem, where community members deliberately degrade our environment through illegal dumping activities, especially rubble or building and demolition waste. Instead of using the landfill sites, community members opt for our public open spaces. To remedy the problem, the community awareness program is being rolled out to all community members. The law enforcement team from Gert Sibande is in partnership with Msukaligwa Local Municipality to deal with law breakers,” MLM stated in 2019.

At that time, the municipality also announced that they would be working in tandem with Gert Sibande District Municipality, and intensify efforts in issuing fines and apprehending offenders. Fast forward to 2022, and nothing has come from the pipe dream. Seemingly little to no effort had been put in to deal with residents and construction companies who illegally dump refuse and building material in this known problem area.

The warning from MLM had been laughed off, and the refuse dumping has, in fact, increased exponentially. The illegal dumping of refuse and other materials is a growing issue within Ermelo, as well as the surrounding areas, with residents paying no heed to the municipal by-laws, which, unfortunately, remain unenforced.