EnviroServ seeks to gag Shongweni landfill activist
Durban – EnviroServ will appear in the Durban High Court on Wednesday seeking to interdict a Shongweni property owner from “defaming” the company and its Shongweni landfill.EnviroServ’s technical director, Esme Gombault, filed the application in December, along with several annexures, including a founding affidavit. ANA has seen the documents.
The waste management company is seeking an interdict to stop Jeremy Everitt, a Plantations Estate property owner, from “disseminating, dispatching or publishing any malicious, untrue, false or defamatory statements or material regarding [EnviroServ’s] business which it conducts at its Shongweni landfill ... by means of any electronic media including but not limited to email, Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter and an electronic websites.”
EnviroServ operates a hazardous waste landfill site in Shongweni.
The landfill has incurred the wrath of community members in Hillcrest, Shongweni, Dassenhoek and surrounds; with residents saying the fumes from the landfill are responsible for increased rates of asthma, bronchitis, pneumonia, eczema, nosebleeds and other illnesses.
Read also: EnviroServ to appear over Shongweni landfill
Residents have complained that their children as well as livestock have been affected.
The interdict which will be heard before Judge Johan Ploos van Amstel, was initially scheduled for 13 March, but was brought forward on a request from EnviroServ, which is seeking “interim relief”.
EnviroServ contends that the main application had been stalled by Everitt through "technical processes".
In his replying affidavit, filed on Tuesday, Everitt dismissed EnviroServ’s claims, saying: “My comments relating to the environmental crisis are true. They are a statement of fact made in the public interest”.
He said the interdict application was not urgent and that the main application was instead being stalled by EnviroServ, which had failed to supply documents that he had requested.
Everitt said he would continue to engage in “non-violent public protest until EnviroServ resolves the problem that it has caused”.
He called the application for interim relief an “abuse of court process”.
Everitt lives and works in London, but owns a property in Plantations Estate in which his sister and her son live.
On Monday, the KZN Directorate of Public Prosecutions’ Advocate Moipone Noko said EnviroServ would be criminally charged.
A case of contravening the National Air Quality Act was opened by the Department of Environment Affairs (DEA) at KwaNdengezi Police Station in September last year and was transferred to the Provincial Task Team for further investigation.