This is why you will not be able to walk your dog in Jameson Park
Durban - Dogs will no longer be allowed at Jameson Park in Morningside following public complaints that some dog owners do not keep their dogs on leashes or pick up their excrement.
The announcement was made by the head of eThekwini Municipality’s Parks, Recreation and Culture Unit, Thembinkosi Ngcobo, during a park activation event last week.
The announcement came as a shock to Morningside and Glenwood dog owners who frequently visit the park with their pets.
Municipal spokesperson, Msawakhe Mayisela, said the decision was not intended to frustrate dog owners or the public.
“The decision was taken after cases of some dog owners failing to clean up after their pets were noted. Other members of the public were then forced to contend with the smell of dog excrement,” he said.
He added that it was also a serious concern that some owners let their dogs run without leashes.
“There were also instances reported of members of the public being harassed by dogs while trying to enjoy the park,” said Mayisela.
Morningside councillor, Ernest Smith, said as the area developed and more flats were built, there was less space for families to enjoy time with their dogs outdoors.
“With this trend happening across central eThekwini, people are left with very few green spaces to go and relax to which they could take their dogs with them,” said Smith.
Smith said the decision affected the Morningside community as well as residents from other areas who travelled to the park.
Smith said he had sent a letter to the parks district control manager requesting that the decision be reversed considering the by-laws of the city were clear about where dogs were allowed, as long as they were leashed.
The councillor added that it was also the responsibility of dog owners to adhere to the rules of walking dogs in public spaces.
Smith said he had also met with the Mitchell Park Trust, under which Jameson Park falls, last week to try to pave a way forward.
He said issues such as plastic dispensers, better signage and the overall state of the park after visitors had left were raised.
A Glenwood resident said on a public Facebook page: “This is frustrating and deeply saddening as many of us travel to that park daily to allow our fur babies to stretch their legs, socialise and have some fun.”
Many residents also raised their objections on the municipality’s Facebook page.