Residents march against ‘toxic’ Durban dump
Rogan Ward And Matthew Savides | 2017-02-04 15:48:46.0
Close to 1500 people took to the streets of the upmarket Hillcrest area of Durban on Saturday against a “toxic” landfill site they say is making them sick.
Image by: Rogan Ward
Chants of “toxic waste‚ EnviroServ” echoed in parts of Hillcrest‚ west of Durban‚ on Saturday morning as close to 1‚500 people marched against pollution at the Shongweni landfill site.
The march came a day after the environmental affairs department gave EnviroServ‚ which runs the site‚ four business days to provide reasons why operations should not be suspended or terminated at the site. The department said unspecified agreement breaches could also result in criminal charges.
EnviroServ said it would meet the deadline‚ and said it was “surprised” by the department’s actions.
But on Saturday‚ while happy at the latest development‚ protesters said they would continue to put pressure on EnviroServ. Residents from upmarket Hillcrest marched alongside those from the more rural Dasenhoek and Shongweni areas.
They have all complained about a stench coming from the site‚ and say that it has gotten worse in recent months. The worsening smell has also been associated with health problems‚ including burning eyes‚ coughing and sore‚ itchy throats.
EnviroServ defended itself against these claims.
“There is no scientific evidence to link EnviroServ to the odour as the DEA-requested technical and toxicology studies are still underway‚” the company said in a statement.
TMG Digital/The Times