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Johannesburg - It’s white, it’s not recycled, it’s nicely pH-balanced for sensitive behinds, quicker than a minute and stamped “CoJ” on both sides.
Yes, that’s the toilet paper in the City of Joburg’s offices.If you thought that buying bog-standard toilet paper was simple, think again.
Then read the specifications for the toilet paper that your council requires.
According to the official list of requirements, each sheet must be at least 110mm long and 100mm wide, on a roll with an inside diameter of 125mm. There must be at least 500 sheets in a roll.
“The basis mass shall be at least 20grm/20m 0,01m of water. Shall be at least 20 and not more than 60 seconds [sic].” (No, we don’t know what that means and we don’t want to.) To soothe your skin, the pH value shall be 4.4 to 8.5.
“The paper shall be reasonable, free from any defects that may empire it serviceability [sic],” states the list.
“Toilet paper shall not be re-bleached, made from the re-claimed material.”
Rolls must be delivered in “suitable strong, firmly secured bulk packaging that is capable of preserving hygienic [sic]”.
And just in case you forget where you are in those little rooms, there’ll be a convenient reminder: “Very important that the toilet paper must be marked with COJ LETTER ON BOTH SIDES,” orders the list.
City of Joburg spokesman Nthatisi Modingoane explained: “The specifications is a standard practice which will ensure that a reasonably good quality of tissue is received and provided.
“The letters ‘COJ’ stamped on the sides of the roll is to identify the product, which is placed at public toilets in the city for public use. This was requested as it prevents theft and the council stock landing on the streets for sale.”
Modingoane said the tender has not been adjudicated yet and the contract is estimated to be worth R500 000 a year.