LIMPOPO – Residents said they have complained about the matter to the Elias Motsoaledi Local Municipality ward 31 councillor, Rhodes Msiza, and the Sekhukhune District Municipality (SDM) without any success.
Boysen Mahlangu, a community leader, said the incessant flow of human excrement and other waste material poses safety and health hazards for residents.
Mahlangu said they were worried about the health of children because they sometimes played inside or near the human waste from burst pipes that remained unfixed for the past five years.
The community leader added they have lost count on how many times the matter was reported to Sekhukhune District Municipality without any action.
Mahlangu said the Mayor, Stan Ramaila, was engaged on the problem in March last year and promised to come back to them within three weeks.
“Nothing has happened since then. We then decided to engage Premier Chupu Stanley Mathabatha but also didn’t receive any assistance. We don’t know who to turn to anymore,” said Mahlangu.
According to residents, the district municipality appointed a contractor in 2014 to permanently eradicate the problem but the said contractor made the matter worse.
“The contractor was supposed to fix the pipes with an excess of R3,5 million paid by the district municipality for a period of four months. Instead, the contractor channelled pipes to nearby open spaces and not the main sewer system.
“Some of the leaking pipes were left unfixed causing human waste to flow into the streets,” explained Mahlangu.
He indicated the sewage flooded the streets forcing people to jump over several streams and puddles before they could enter their yards.
“Trenches have been dug next to houses so the sewage can flow out of the yards. The used toilet paper, however, remains scattered across the ground. We cannot sleep peacefully at night as the stench fills our houses,” said Mahlangu.
He threatened that residents would take to streets if the district municipality failed to deal with the matter permanently.
“This has been an ongoing battle for the past five years. We are not able to enjoy life because of the stench and unhygienic conditions we are forced to live in. It is disgusting and we are tired,” Mahlangu said.
Willy Mosoma, SDM Spokesperson, said the municipality was aware of the problem.
“The problem is that some of the people have built their houses on top of the main sewerage pipe which makes it difficult for the municipality to fix the leaking pipes,” Mosoma said.