Illegal dumping sites turned into children’s playgrounds
Durban and Port Elizabeth have found the answer to their illegal dumping woes — they are turning the dumps into playgrounds.
The Nelson Mandela Bay municipality, in the Eastern Cape, has pumped R4.5-million into creating parks — five of which were illegal dumping sites.
Deputy mayor Mongameli Bobani said the city was trying to solve its illegal dumping problem by turning sites into much-needed playgrounds.
“Last financial year we developed seven parks in historically disadvantaged areas at a cost of R4.5-million. Five of these were illegal dumping hot spots.
“Development includes fencing with durable plastic-coated fences, installation of outdoor gyms, grass laying, pathways, mini soccer, basketball and netball courts and tree planting,” said Bobani. He said the initiative was “killing two birds with one stone”.
“This assists the municipality in two ways — it creates a safe environment for children in which to play and also deals with illegal dumping.
” Last week the Sunday Times reported that South Africa was facing a playgrounds crisis because there were not enough safe spaces for children to play in.
A report by North West University’s environmental science unit said that such areas were a “scarce commodity”. Durban has identified 100 illegal dumping sites to be turned into parks.
“This will also involve the communities, especially children who will be educated about nature conservation and the bad effect illegal dumping has on the environment,” the council said.