Cape Town 130605- Families in Khayelitsha speaks about the portable toilets they are using.Picture Cindy waxa.Reporter Zodidi/Argus
Cape Town 130605- Families in Khayelitsha speaks about the portable toilets they are using.Picture Cindy waxa.Reporter Zodidi/Argus

De Lille and team go in for toilet clean-up

By Anel Lewis Time of article published Jun 11, 2013

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Cape Town - In a last-ditch attempt to calm the faeces protests, Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille went into Kanana and Barcelona settlements on Tuesday morning with an operations team from the city utility to do a clean-up, along with a heavy police and metro police presence.

She warned there could be deaths if clean-up crews were not allowed into dangerous areas in the city soon.

“We want metro police to accompany staff as they go into dangerous areas.” De Lille said. “The city been asking the community daily if its safe go to these hot spots to resume cleaning services. We’re going to see someone die there because of conditions.

“We have to try one last time to clean up there.”

Police said the community was divided over the issue of portable toilets. They warned media and the city team that they didn’t know who to watch out for while going in. De Lille cautioned media to stay together so police could protect them too.

The areas have been the sites of violent attacks and intimidation on city officials wanting to clean toilets there.

De Lille added: “This is an extraordinary measure taken under very difficult circumstances. It must be emphasised that the threats of violence previously posed against our staff is still real.”

Media and staff donned protective gear to enter the area.

De Lille had said the city would not be providing any more services in these areas until the violence stopped.

She said this was based on information the city continued to receive from crime intelligence metro police, community leaders and local councillors. She said the city would use all available resources to protect the right of citizens to dignified sanitation.

She said there had been instances recently where staff had been followed. Last week, a city vehicle was followed from Barcelona to Borchards Quarry and the occupants of the car threatened to shoot staff.

A staff member was later followed to his house. “We simply cannot allow this situation to continue.”

Cape Argus

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