Thomson urges residents to see value in recycling

From left, District Mayor Thobekile Maphumulo, Deputy Minister of Environmental Affairs Barbara Thomson, Msunduzi Mayor Themba Njilo, Ward 34 Councillor Mike Amod

Addressing the community of Ward 34 in Eastwood, Thomson expressed concern over the deteriorating state of cleanliness within the city and residential communities.

“As a person born and bred in Pietermaritzburg, I will look at allocating department resources to ensure this city is always beautiful and clean,” said Thomson.

Thomson further highlighted the importance of recycling and employment opportunities that arise from waste management and recycling.

“We need to start understanding that waste is a commodity, and it is time the community plays their part. When we realise the importance of recycling and the benefits, development can start occurring in our communities”, said Thomson.


From left District Mayor Thobekile Maphumulo, Deputy Minister of Environmental Affairs Barbara Thomson, Msunduzi Mayor Themba Njilo and Songimvelo co-founder Hugo Ngcobo

Handing over the new bakkie to Songmivelo, a mobile environmental and awareness group that employs vagrants and unemployed youth to collect recyclable material for recycling within the city, Thomson said this was the start of many such initiatives.

Songimvelo co-founders Hugo Ngcobo and Irvin Khumalo said the sole mandate of the mobile recycling initiative was to eradicate illegal dumping and create more awareness about environmental issues among the youth.

“This is part of radical transformation. Cans and plastic bottles can make a huge difference, but this transformation can only work with the community’s help”, said District Mayor Thobekile Maphumalo.

Msunduzi Mayor Themba Njilo mirrored Maphumalo’s words stating that the clean-up initiative and tools donated by the department of environmental affairs would help transform the city.

“This is a dream come true for the city to take on a clean-up initiative. We’ve already started the cleaning process beginning at the Ematsheni area and clearing up the streets,”said Njilo.

Thomson noted that the city had other environmental issues; such as educating residents about environmental issues and air pollution from the industrial sector that still needs be attended to. The hand over is just a “drop in the ocean”, to the environmental development that needs to occur in the city.





Bongeka Sibisi

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