South Africa: Dunoon Residents Face Health Risk

There are growing health concerns in South Africa‘s Dunoon settlement following reports of heaps of uncollected garbage spilling over onto the narrow roads of Doornbach.

Development Diaries reports that the waste has not been collected since the end of June 2023, with residents deeply concerned about risk to health, an increasing rat population, and threats to children who play on the rubbish heaps, according to GroundUp.

A community leader, Phindile Mazula, lamented that inhabitants were dumping items such as diaper waste, food scraps, beer bottles, and human waste.

‘It is unhygienic. It is affecting our health. The food waste is rotting. Children here do not have a place to play, it is easy for them to contract diseases’, he is quoted as saying.

Figures from the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) reveal that South Africa is estimated to generate domestically a total of 12.7 million tonnes of waste per annum.

Municipalities in the country, according to the United Nations agency, are facing increasing pressures and challenges to provide waste management services due to the growing waste generation.

Every year, approximately 3.67 million tonnes of generated waste are not collected and treated through formal waste collection systems, which has resulted in large amounts being dumped illegally.

Also, WasteAid, in a report, noted that around one in three people (more than five million households) in South Africa lack access to a regular waste collection service, and the open burning of waste is commonplace.

Development Diaries calls on the South African Department of Environmental Affairs to step up efforts towards ensuring proper waste disposal in the country and ensure a healthy environment for all.

Photo source: Peter Luhanga


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