TRASHING THE TOWN: Trash has accumulated outside the Integrated Waste and Recycling Services buy-back centre at the Port Alfred tourism office since skips for normal household refuse were removed Picture: LOUISE KNOWLES
RESIDENTS have bemoaned the removal of rubbish skips from the Port Alfred tourism office parking lot, and some people have still been dumping there, creating an eyesore, a health hazard and posing a danger to motorists.
The skips were removed last month. Municipal spokesman Cecil Mbolekwa explained: “Due to a lack of capital budget, the municipality did not have the capacity to remove the skips when they were full. This resulted in a health nuisance, and litter blowing into the Kowie River.”
Last Friday a motorist who swerved to avoid a cardboard box in the middle of the road almost collided with an oncoming vehicle driving on the other side of the road.
Residents helped to pick up the trash which they said a vagrant had strewn across the road.
The trash had been left outside the Integrated Waste and Recycling Services (IWARS) buy-back centre in the parking lot.
IWARS project implementer Kevin Lee said: “The buy-back centre closes at 5pm and opens at 8am and people come and dump their trash after hours. There is nothing IWARS can do to stop them.”
Several TotT readers on Facebook called for the skips to be returned.
“We would prefer it if the skips were back. But the municipality can’t keep up with the skips,” said Lee.
The municipality does not intend to return the skips. Mbolekwa said residents should take large quantities of trash to the dumpsite themselves. He said rates and taxes paid by residents do not include access to skips, only the daily collection of household refuse.
He said the municipality was aware that the dumped trash causes a bad public relations image of Port Alfred and puts off tourists, but claimed that this is why they had removed the skips in the first place.
The municipality maintains that it does not have the capacity to remove the skips when they are full.