Metro police leads operation to clear up illegal recycling site

Rubbish strewn on the roadside of Solomon Mahlangu Drive. SUPPLIED

Rubbish strewn on the roadside of Solomon Mahlangu Drive. SUPPLIED

Published May 15, 2024


An illegal recycling site littered with tons of rat-infested and stinking rubbish strewn on the roadside of Solomon Mahlangu Drive near Castle Gate shopping centre has been an eyesore to locals and motorists alike for some time.

On Monday, the Tshwane Metro Police Department (TMPD) led a joint-enforcement operation to remove recyclers from the site, which is among many that have sprung up all over the municipality.

The City of Tshwane deployed TLBs to clear up the illegal site which was full of scrap metals, building waste, plastics and boxes.

Members of the SAPS, TMPD, the municipal waste management unit and Home Affairs Department officials took part in the joint operation to enforce the city by-laws.

TMPD police chief Yolanda Faro said the law-enforcement fraternity joined hands with the common purpose of making sure that the site was restored to its former self by cleaning it up.

“This area has been an eyesore for a very long time,” she said.

The law-enforcers will conduct regular checks to make sure the site doesn’t mushroom again, she said.

“But we also want to speak to the residents; to ask them not to come and do recycling at the illegal recyclers' site. Also, not to sell to people who are doing illegal trading and to assist us in enforcing the by-laws in the City of Tshwane,” she said.

The clean-up joint operation, which resulted in three undocumented migrants being arrested, was executed following a stern warning by Mayor Cilliers Brink that the City would maintain a zero-tolerance approach to curb unlawful disposal of waste.

Brink said the TMPD would confiscate vehicles of illegal dumpers and impose hefty fines on them.

Brink said: “We need to work together to keep Tshwane clean. On our part, as the City, and in an effort to improve our services, we have embarked on a waste management data-verification project aimed at addressing waste service billing accuracy and other related matters, such as applying for additional bins.”

There was no excuse for illegal dumping because the City has operational disposal sites accessible to the public for domestic and garden refuse, he said.

Residents were encouraged to make use of the disposal facilities to help keep the municipality clean.

The City recently disclosed that it spends at least R30 million on clear-up campaigns of illegal dumping every year.


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