News agency, Cape Town, South Africa
Friday December 15th 2017

School starts amid illegal dump stench

A resident is seen pulling a wheeliebin to dump its contents on a sports field next to Du Noon Primary school. The stench from the mountain of garbage can be smelled throughout the school. Photo: Peter Luhanga/WCN.

A resident is seen pulling a wheeliebin to dump its contents on a sports field next to Du Noon Primary school. The stench from the mountain of garbage can be smelled throughout the school. Photo: Peter Luhanga/WCN.

17.01.2013

A foul stench emanating from illegally dumped waste, including faeces and rotting animal carcasses, welcomed Du Noon primary school learners as they arrived for their first day of school on Wednesday.

During the vacation residents living in backyard shacks had been dumping waste on a field next to the school, creating a large mound of refuse, the stench of which permeated the air in classrooms and school offices.

At the school on Wednesday parents who came to enroll their children were seen covering their mouths and noses. The smell of faeces and rotting carcasses could be smelled in the principal’s office.

“This (illegal) dumping is frustrating. It does not teach our learners a good lesson because we teach them to put litter in the bin,” said principal Sabelo Makubalo.

Makubalo said at times when he confronted residents found dumping rubbish next to the school they threatened him and said ‘what are you going to do about it’?

Veliswa Nodwa, 30, a security guard whose eight-year-old child attends the school, said when she told residents not to dump their waste there they swore at her.

Nodwa said residents, especially backyarders, often emptied buckets containing faeces and urine right next to the school fence.

“They throw faeces, dead rodents, animal carcasses. There is a foul stench here all the time. Flies are entering the classrooms,” said Nodwa.

Pheliswa Mtshazi, 26, who arrived to enroll her child in Grade R, said the situation was “unacceptable”.

She said she was unemployed and would happily help clean up the garbage for a minimal monthly stipend from the City.

City of Cape Town media manager Priya Reddy said the City’s Sport, Recreation and Amenities Department was investigating the allegations of dumping on the sports field and the Health Department was investigating whether any of the waste constituted a health risk.

“Action will be taken where necessary,” she said but added it was the school’s responsibility to clear any waste dumped on their property.

There was no reason for residents to dump waste as their were sufficient waste removal services provided to the area, she said.

Illegal dumping was in the spotlight last year in April when a girl in Delft died after coming into contact with chemical waste illegally dumped in Symphony Way and Silversands Roads.

The chemical waste included included Sodium Nitrate, Trisodium phosphate, gum powder and hydrogenated glycyds.

At the time the City had said in its 2012/2013 budget it had set aside more than R200million for the removal of waste that had been illegally dumped. — Peter Luhanga

 

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