Lower Crossroads residents are fuming over disruptions to the municipal refuse service that have left the community swamped by mounds of uncollected waste.
Garbage was last collected in the area just before Christmas, and since then, waste has continued to pile up, giving off a foul stench in the heat of the day, say residents.
Mayoral committee member for urban waste management Grant Twigg said services had resumed but were hampered by threats of extortion and a lack of law enforcement escorts for garbage trucks.
“There is an ongoing risk of delays due to dangers of operating in the area, and residents should be made aware of this.”
Resident Nomava Mbewu said the City should have at least provided skips as a contingency measure.
“This waste up and down our street as well as on many streets in the neighbourhood is hazardous. As you see, this is unhealthy for us all. Imagine the children playing outside in this situation. We are taken for granted,” she said, adding that the stench from the uncollected rubbish was unbearable.
“When it’s hot, you cannot open the windows. It gets worse.”
Another resident, Nontuthuzelo Phetho, criticised the authorities for not dealing decisively with extortion rackets in the area.
“We have a government that we trust, but the same government cannot deal with crime… Residents are forced to dump everywhere because there is no hope that waste collectors would show up.”
Thembekile Tiso felt there should have been better communication from the City about the problem.
“We have leaders that they can talk to so they can pass the message to us. These people do not care about us. As the elections are approaching, I want to see if they will do this. The truth is we are taken for granted by all. There should be better communication with us,” he said.