Dunoon’s plumbing problems spill over

Silverleaf Road is always in a bad state.

Dunoon’s medieval-style plumbing problems have become a serious worry for neighbouring Table View residents.

Earlier this year, Tabletalk reported on the terrible conditions Dunoon residents endure (“Pipe bursts dog Dunoon”, Tabletalk, March 14).

Now The Table View Ratepayers’ Association (TVRA) fears there could be an outbreak of disease in the township and that it could spill over into surrounding areas, if swift action isn’t taken.

The TVRA’s Tracy Edwards said: “With Dunoon being our neighbours, we feel it right to support them on this issue, as well as protect our residents.

“According to council, densification and illegal dumping are major contributors to the problem. Council is mandated to govern, voted in by majority in order to up our chances of good governance.

“We do not see this as good governance from the point of view that council is relying on citizens, to do what citizens have mandated council to do.”

Greater Table View Action Forum chairwoman Karen Davis said it was unacceptable for people to have to live with sewage running through their streets and properties.

“This is horrendous because an outbreak of any illness may affect neighbouring communities. It is a violation of human rights for anyone to live like this,” she said.

Usazaza Road resident Nomsa Blayi said hardly a week went by without at least one burst pipe in the area.

“We live in very bad conditions here. Our kids as well as ourselves are getting sick because we are basically living in the gutter with all this mess. I would like the City to do more to help us because we feel like we are being treated like we don’t belong here,” she said.

Stuart Diamond, the acting Mayco member for informal settlements, water and waste services, and energy, said sanitation workers worked hard to unblock Dunoon’s sewers.

“Teams regularly remove a variety of objects and materials illegally dumped into the system that cause blockages. The high blockage rate is due to inappropriate objects and materials that are dumped illegally into the sewers.

“A lot of time and resources are allocated to clearing these blockages on a daily basis. The main pipe along the sport field is also problematic due to illegal dumping and the constant damaging of the manholes, covers and frames,” said Mr Diamond.

He said the City had some planned and ongoing upgrades for Dunoon.

“Pipes in the area have been upgraded already. Manhole covers are replaced on an ongoing basis to curb the illegal dumping of foreign objects, abuse, theft and vandalism. Sand traps have also been installed and are cleaned on a weekly basis in an effort to reduce illegal dumping of foreign objects, abuse, theft and vandalism.

“The sewer diversion project for Dunoon to reroute a portion of the sewer is already on the budget for 2018/19 and 2019/20. The total investment of this project will amount to R 5 million. This sewer diversion project will assist with the surcharging of flows and reduce blockages in general,” he said.

But Sihle Nqanda, a Waxberry Street resident in Dunoon, said he wondered why the politicians weren’t working harder to solve Dunoon’s sewer woes given the approaching election year.

“They want to build a new development and upgrade the taxi rank, but they can hardly take care of us here. How about using that money to upgrade the drainage system?

“How about turning Site 5 into a formal dwelling? We also want regular garbage collection and this might help to stop people just dumping just anywhere,” he said.

Mr Diamond said the City’s solid waste management department delivered two independent refuse collection services in Dunoon, one in the formal area and the other in the informal area.

“Refuse collection in the formal area is by way of a weekly kerbside collection of wheelie bins. The City has attempted to address the challenges of widespread dumping into the sewer system by a number of methods, such as the providing an additional free-of-charge wheelie bin for each formal dwelling which the City services once a week,” he said.

Peter Walsh, chairman of the Milnerton Central Ratepayers’ Association, said he was well aware of the sewer problems in Dunoon, and Joe Slovo had similar issues.

“No-one should need to live in any place where sanitation is not provided, whether it is Joe Slovo or Dunoon or any other neighbourhood. Our belief is that we can’t idly stand by and watch.

“So, until our neighbours can enjoy a life without squalor we are going to continue to engage to see how we can make a meaningful difference,” he said.