Rubbish piles up in Enkanini for nearly two weeks

Residents in the informal settlement in Khayelitsha have been forced to live with overflowing drains and rubbish

Photo of a boy at the roadside with piles of rubbish

A boy waits to cross Ntlazane Road in Enkanini. Photo: Masixole Feni

By Barbara Maregele

5 February 2016

This follows a dispute between workers and the refuse removal contractors over the appointment of staff in the township.

On Thursday, City officials told GroundUp that the rubbish would be cleared from the area by Friday.

When GroundUp visited Enkanini earlier this week, piles of blue council rubbish bags were seen stacked up along Nthlazana Road. Adding to the pungent smell was an overflowing nearby drain. Residents said this often happened.

Photo of school kids next to rubbish
School children pass cleaned portable toilets and rubbish piled high in Enkanini. Photo: Masixole Feni.

Resident Balindile Mpumluwana said the rubbish has not been collected for nearly two weeks.

“There are flies everywhere. We can’t even leave food open in our homes. I have to stop my young children from playing near the dirt because they might get sick. We can’t live like this,” she said.

Peter Ntombizandile said: “They [the City] need to close the drains to stop people from throwing bottles and cardboard in there. This drain is blocked every week. It smells bad.”

Lucas Nkewu, who owns a fruit stall nearby, said the rubbish chased away his customers.

“The smell is very bad when it’s hot. There’s always flies; they are all over the fruit and it’s not nice. People don’t want to come and stand here, because I’m right next to the dirt,” he said.

Photo of overflowing storm drain
Blocked drains overflow at Enkanini. Photo: Masixole Feni

Mayoral committee member for utility services Ernest Sonnenberg said that the contractor had resolved the issue and the rubbish would all be collected by late Thursday (yesterday) afternoon.

“A combined effort of contracted workers and a front-end loader, a grab truck and 12 tipper vehicles will be sent to help clear the backlog,” he said.

‘The City has run a number of educational campaigns which explain both what is suitable for disposal into the sewerage system and the importance of reporting those who abuse the system,” he said.

At the time of publication, an Enkanini resident informed GroundUp that the mess has not been cleaned.

Photo of man walking in street with rubbish piled high
Rubbish piled high on Ntlazane Road, Enkanini. Photo: Masixole Feni