THE Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality is fighting a losing battle in its war against illegal dumping, with only R6-million allocated in the draft 2012/13 budget while R132-million is needed to address the problem.
The municipality was rapped over the knuckles by the provincial Department of Economic Affairs, Environment and Tourism (Deaet) last month for its poor management of the Kragga Kamma waste site.
It was instructed to address the problems within five days.
A report by public health executive director Dr Mamisa Chabula-Nxiweni to the public health portfolio committee meeting yesterday revealed the city would not be able to immediately comply with the permit conditions.
This has led to Chabula-Nxiweni requesting the site be closed while it is upgraded in order to comply with the waste licence conditions.
"Deaet issued the [municipality] with a notice of permit non-compliance for the Kragga Kamma waste transfer site dated May 9 2012.
"The notice instructs the municipality to address and correct poor management of the site within five working days from the notice date.
"The municipality must provide Deaet with an operational management plan as per condition of the waste licence,” Chabula-Nxiweni said.
In her report, she said the site could currently only accommodate three 30m³ containers, which could not handle the large amount of waste being dumped.
"Only once the site has been upgraded and the operational issues sorted out can a comprehensive operational management plan be compiled and instituted,” she said.
Speaking about her department’s attempts to eradicate illegal dumping, Chabula-Nxiweni said budget constraints were a big stumbling block in achieving their goals. "The total cost for the eradication of illegal dumping is R132-million and we are only getting R6-million, which we will use to upgrade Kragga Kamma.
"We are trying to do other things that don’t require much funding, such as the waste management forums.”
ANC councillor Mbongeni Bungane said it was important they pushed for a larger budget allocation.
UDM councillor Mongameli Bobani said refuse workers were battling to collect rubbish because there were not enough refuse trucks.
"Most of the trucks that the municipality has need repairs and they need permission from the automotive division in fleet management, which is where everything gets stuck,” he said. "We need our own fleet.”
DA councillor Heinrich Muller, who is also the ward councillor for the area, said the site was "a headache and embarrassment” to the metro.
The councillors all welcomed the proposal to close the Kragga Kamma waste site while it was upgraded.