Mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ty ta­kes heed of cu­s­to­mers com­plaints a­bout re­fu­se woes

Graaff-Reinet Advertiser - - Voorblad -

GRAAFF-REI­NET — Ma­ny re­si­dents of Graaff-rei­net and Aberdeen ha­ve been up in arms a­bout the chan­ge in ti­me for re­fu­se col­lecti­on, and af­ter a week, it seems that the­se com­plaints ha­ve been hee­ded by the mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ty.

On No­vem­ber 23, the Ward 7 ward coun­cil­lor shared on the ward’s W­hat­sapp group a no­ti­ce he had re­cei­ved from Le­o­lynn S­mith, Com­mu­ni­ca­ti­ons of­fi­cer for the Mu­ni­ci­pa­li­ty, con­cer­ning the town’s rub­bish col­lecti­on.

It sta­ted that as from No­vem­ber 27 (the fol­lo­wing week) re­fu­se would be col­lected from 05:00, es­pe­ci­al­ly du­ring the days w­hen tem­pe­ra­tu­res are ex­pected to ri­se a­bo­ve 35 de­grees.

Si­mi­lar mes­sa­ges we­re shared on ot­her plat­forms in­clu­ding the Graaff-rei­net Neig­hbour­hood Wa­tch Fa­ce­book group.

W­hi­le re­specting the fact that it does be­co­me ex­tre­me­ly hot so­me days, ma­ny re­si­dents ex­pres­sed their con­cerns a­bout the ef­fects of col­lecting the re­fu­se so e­ar­ly.

The lack of a­de­qua­te no­ti­fi­ca­ti­on was im­me­di­a­te­ly ci­ted, as the in­for­ma­ti­on was re­cei­ved too la­te for in­clu­si­on in that week’s Ad­ver­ti­ser. Not e­ver­y­bo­dy has access to W­hat­sapp or Fa­ce­book, and no no­ti­ces we­re de­li­ver­ed to pe­op­le’s ho­mes.

A­not­her ma­jor pro­blem rai­sed is that most pe­op­le are not up and a­bout be­fo­re 05:00. This me­ans they would put their rub­bish bags out be­fo­re going to bed the e­ve­ning be­fo­re col­lecti­on.

With ma­ny stray dogs that are not kept in­si­de their o­w­ners’ y­ards at nig­ht, and al­so cats ro­a­ming a­round, re­si­dents we­re con­cer­ned that the bags would be rip­ped o­pen by a­ni­mals, and this has pro­ved to be the ca­se.

The bags are al­so vul­ne­ra­ble to pe­op­le sca­ven­ging, a pro­blem seen par­ti­cu­lar­ly in Graaff-rei­net.

In the past, this has hap­pe­ned in the mor­ningsnow the sca­ven­gers ha­ve had all nig­ht to go through the bags, rai­sing con­cerns a­bout sa­fe­ty with unkno­wn pe­op­le ro­a­ming a­bout the town af­ter dark.

Both a­ni­mals and sca­ven­gers le­a­ve rub­bish lying on the s­treet, cau­sing a he­alth ha­zard, and it is highly un­li­ke­ly that the re­fu­se col­lec­tors will pick up this rub­bish. So­me pe­op­le who put their bags out at the nor­mal ti­me last week, u­na­wa­re of the chan­ge, ca­me ho­me la­ter in the day to find the con­tents of the bags lying a­round in the s­treet. This has been seen a­gain this week.

The­re was a short no­ti­ce re­gar­ding the chan­ged ti­mes in last week’s Ad­ver­ti­ser, but this on­ly men­ti­o­ned Graaff-rei­net, and not Aberdeen. This week, ma­ny re­si­dents we­re still u­na­wa­re of the e­ar­lier col­lecti­on ti­mes, and li­nes of black bags we­re still seen in the streets well af­ter the truck had fi­nis­hed its rounds.

Se­ver­al i­ra­te re­si­dents con­tacted the mu­ni­ci­pal of­fi­ces, but ha­ve had no sa­tis­fac­to­ry re­spon­se.

At le­ast one per­son e-mai­led the mu­ni­ci­pal ma­na­ger o­ver a week ago, with no ackno­w­led­ge­ment to da­te.

In re­spon­se to the ma­ny com­plaints re­cei­ved, coun­cil­lors we­re no­ti­fied on Wed­nes­day mor­ning by S­mith that the ti­me for re­fu­se re­mo­val has been chan­ged back to nor­mal ti­mes until furt­her no­ti­ce.

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