Home News LOOK: Residents raise stink over “inhuman” living conditions

LOOK: Residents raise stink over “inhuman” living conditions


Sol Plaatje municipality accused of ignoring the unbearable stench residents are being exposed to every day due to overflowing sewage

“Bloody water”, containing animal intestines and cow dung, flowing in the area. Pictures: Danie van der Lith

RESIDENTS living close to Kamfers Dam have expressed their frustration regarding the “inhuman” living conditions they have to endure while the Sol Plaatje Municipality is accused of turning a blind eye.

According to the residents, the municipality is ignoring the unbearable stench they are being exposed to every day due to overflowing sewage.

Complaints were lodged with the municipality four months ago but, according to the residents, all they have received are reference numbers and no help.

They said that they have been forced to get used to the disgusting sewage stench, mosquito bites, dysfunctional street lights and exposed power cables.

The residents also claimed that “bloody water”, containing animal intestines and cow dung, runs from Beefmaster towards the nearby non-functioning pump station.

The stinking water is gushing from the faulty pump station and everything is running towards Kamfers Dam.

A burst pipe that supplies the residents and the Flamingo Casino with water is also a major concern.

The clean water from the burst pipe, along with water from a nearby stream, also flows towards Kamfers Dam.

Exposed power cables on the ground also create a dangerous situation in the area.

One of the residents, Janse van Rensburg, who has been living near Kamfers Dam for 32 years, indicated that the area is also the target of cable thieves.

He said they sometimes have to go for up to 72 hours without power while they wait for the stolen cables to be replaced.

Van Rensburg added that exposed electricity cables were left lying on the ground by municipal workers who promised to return and fix them.

“We suggested that a pole be put up between the transformer and the houses in order to avoid cables from being tampered with or someone getting electrocuted,” said Van Rensburg.

The residents believe that the exposed power cables are the reason why the N12 street lights are not working.

Beefmaster has indicated that there is nothing wrong with its wastewater system that is used to dispose of effluent, and that the maintenance or the upkeep of the infrastructure in the area is not its responsibility.

The company’s safety, health and environment manager, Jean van Biljon, said that their systems are fully compliant with effluent discharge regulations as well as their own health and safety protocols.

Van Biljon added that finding a solution to a sufficient drainage system requires input from various stakeholders.

“The reality is that we are not responsible for the maintenance or the upkeep of the infrastructure in the area that, if in good working condition, should effectively dispose of the effluent for all businesses in the area.”

According to the company, it has raised the issue with the municipality as part of its commitment to working with stakeholders in the area to find a viable solution.

Sol Plaatje Municipality spokesperson Sello Matsie confirmed receipt of the service delivery complaints.

“The complaints are currently being dealt with by various sections and the Beefmaster issue will be addressed with them. Cable theft remains a huge problem,” Matsie said.