City of Cape Town urge communities to join hands and fight illegal dumping

Rubbish piles up at what has become a smelly illegal dumping site next to Masonwabe Primary School in Delft. Picture: Independent Newspapers

Rubbish piles up at what has become a smelly illegal dumping site next to Masonwabe Primary School in Delft. Picture: Independent Newspapers

Published Feb 23, 2024


Cape Town - Despite the allocation of more than R100 million a year for clean-up efforts, illegal dumping continued to pose a significant challenge in many neighbourhoods across Cape Town.

This comes as the City’s urban waste directorate urged residents to organise once-off community clean-up events.

The City said illegal dumping hot spots were used regularly by surrounding communities as well as opportunistic dumpers.

Among the hot spot areas were parts of Dunoon, Wallacedene, Elsies River, Atlantis Industrial Area, Wynberg, Retreat, Parkwood, Vrygrond, Muizenberg, Strandfontein Road, Eerste River, Blackheath, Blue Downs, Kalkfontein, Wesbank, Kuils River, Duinefontein Road, Old Lansdowne Road, Swartklip Road, Philippi East, Eisleben Road and AZ Berman Road in Mitchells Plain.

The City said that almost as soon as sites were cleared, a new round of dumping occurred.

Urban waste management Mayco member Grant Twigg said communities should help discourage dumping.

“If the culprits see that communities are making an effort to clean up dumping hot spots, many will be deterred from dumping there again for fear of reprisal,” said Twigg.

“Those involved in the clean-up will also be more motivated to watch over the site and report anybody who undoes their good work,” said Twigg.

Lina Ngqobeni, a Gugulethu resident who recently complained about illegal dumping in a nearby canal that caused a mosquito infestation, said illegal dumping continued unabated.

“All efforts have been made to curb illegal dumping; however, none of these efforts discourage people from dumping.

“We welcome this community clean-up initiative by the City and hope that it will produce great results.

“The community and, in particular, children, are at risk of being infected with diseases due to illegal dumping,” said Ngqobeni.

She said there was a need for waste management education in informal settlements.

“The City has to do more to educate our people on illegal dumping and add more resources, such as central waste bins and so on.

“The City also needs to monitor local tuckshops because they are the biggest contributors to this phenomenon,” said Ngqobeni.

The Department of Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment (DFFE) said illegally dumped tyres and containers were “perfect places for mosquitoes to breed. Sharp objects can be picked up by children, which can then harm them, or they may eat something that can make them sick.”

Illegal dumping in progress can be reported to the City’s Public Emergency Communication Centre on 021 480 7700.

Alternatively, the public can share tips for a potential reward via the City’s 24-hour tip-off line on 0800 110 077

[email protected]

Cape Argus