The growing number of squatter settlements in Soshanguve has led to locals setting up illegal dumpsites. This is a result of illegal dumping (fly-tipping), where household waste and other ‘controlled’ waste are illegally disposed of.
Littering and illegal dumping (fly-tipping) are not the same. Littering is frequently thought to contain elements related to smoking, eating, and drinking.
The waste (fly-tipping) can also be dangerous, with some containing asbestos, which poses a concern to both residents and the environment.
The waste could be liquid or solid. Garden waste products, as well as bigger home products like refrigerators and mattresses, are considered “controlled waste”.
Concerns have been expressed regarding the costs of cleaning waste from private landowners’ properties and many initiatives have been formed to advocate for reform in this area.
Waste containing electronic liquids can also be dangerous for people, animals, and the environment as contains propylene glycol,” the resident explained.
The stench of unclean water and burst sewage pervades the area. When unclean water is mixed with dumping on the road, the area becomes stinky, creating disease among the residents.
In 2023, the City of Tshwane implemented additional efforts to raise awareness about unlawful dumping, including incorporating the community in a campaign to educate people about the consequences of illegal dumping.
Locals believe sanctions for illegal dumping should be implemented, as Soshanguve residents continue to dump due to the expansion in squatter camps and face criminal charges for refusing to pay for dirtying the entire area.
During the period 2012-2021, squatter settlements increased in Soshanguve, leading to sites for illegal dumping. It serves as a caution to guests who visit families to avoid dozens of unlawful disposal sites across the township, which also involve untreated sewage water found in various areas of the community.
To date, enforcement authorities have given warnings and penalty notices in cases where evidence was discovered. However, according to the community, fines are still due and being examined.
MMC for Environment and Agriculture Ziyanda Zwane was at the forefront of the ‘Rekaofela Cleaning Campaign which took place in Soshanguve. The main aim of the campaign is to clean up the streets of the City of Tshwane and educate members of the community about the importance of having a clean environment.
“ The responsibility of having a clean environment is not solely for the government but also for the people who are living in that environment so the ‘Rekaofela Campaign’s main concept is to make sure we mobilise communities to join hands with our government in making sure we are cleaning our spaces”.
‘With a lot of dumping sites developing across the city, especially in local townships, the ‘Rekaofela Cleaning Campaign’ also thrives in educating communities about waste management and recycling said MMC Zwane
Local authorities are responsible for investigating, clearing, and taking appropriate enforcement action about small-scale fly-tipping on public land.
In the City of Tshwane, Environment, and Agriculture Management, is responsible for dealing with larger-scale hazardous waste in communities. Illegal dumping is an ongoing problem with negative financial implications for the City.
In the last financial year (2021/22), the City spent around R43,6 million to clear illegal dumping sites. This is money that could have been used better for service delivery. Illegal dumping remains a major problem citywide. Thousands of tonnes of waste are cleared annually from illegal dumping hotspots.
Residents in Soshanguve Block R told Tshwane Bulletin that the best way to reduce illegal dumping is for the City of Tshwane to establish a harsh fine for illegally dumping rubbish.
Tshwane residents are encouraged to report illegal dumping to Illegal dumping must be reported to the Tshwane Metro Police Department on 012 358 7095/6
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