RTC gives feedback on litter issue

Council dishing out fines in a bid to curb illegal rubbish dumping.

23 October 2019 | Local News

Yolanda Nel After a social media attack last week with photos of garbage thrown everywhere in town as well as a cow carcass not being removed, the Rehoboth Town Council (RTC) is giving answers.
RTC Public Relations Officer Desire Theunissen admitted that the dumping of garbage is increasing in the town. “Unfortunately community members make themselves guilty of illegal dumping,” adding that there is a lack of cooperation in RTC’s efforts to ensure a clean and healthy environment.
According to Theunissen, provision is made for waste removal every week. “Also, Town Council in collaboration with the refuse removal company Frontier Multi Industries and other stakeholders, conducted five clean-up campaigns, awareness campaigns and regular civic education regarding illegal dumping in the current financial year.”
She said that it is worth noting that in Block E specifically, Council organised three clean-up campaigns, bringing the campaigns to a total of eight thus far.
As part of a team building exercise Town Council employees also conducted a separate clean-up operation in the same block where excessive illegal dumping is the order of the day. “During all these campaigns it is regrettable to note that community participation was very poor,” she said.

Illegal settlement
Theunissen said that the photos being shared on social media were taken in Block E, at an illegal settlement. During the clean-up campaign, ten loads of waste were removed. “At the moment Council is cleaning up the heaps with assistance and support of New Hope Sand and Stone, with seven loads that were already removed yesterday. The campaign will continue until Friday if time permits.”
Regarding the carcass, Theunissen said that the owner of the animal is not in compliance with Council Pounding Regulations and that animals are prohibited in town. “It is the owner’s obligation to be a responsible resident and community member to safeguard the health and safety of his neighbours and the cleanliness of the town. Therefore, Town Council cannot be held responsible for the removal of a carcass dumped by its owner.”
Council is aggressively combating illegal dumping. “So far three perpetrators have been fined and verbal warnings were issued. Any person making themselves guilty of dumping waste illegally, is guilty of an offense and will be fined N$3 500.”
The RTC is thankful for businesses that are willing to assist and they appeal to the residents to help Council remove waste and to stop illegal dumping. They are also looking into establishing committees from the respective areas to assist in combating illegal dumping.
Town Council conducts regular awareness campaigns through radio, public notices, posters and leaflets which deliver core messages regarding waste management “as part of our efforts to educate residents,” Theunissen said.
She said that while “No littering” signs had been erected at strategic spots, street litter drums had been planted, which were donated by Emsure Insurance Brokers. There are currently three skip containers in use, while a request to obtain additional skip containers will follow the usual procurement process.

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