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DA takes Butterworth sewage problem to Human Rights Commission

Jul 31, 2018
DA takes Butterworth sewage problem to Human Rights Commission

The Democratic Alliance (DA) in the Eastern Cape says it has written to the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) to urgently intervene in Skiti Informal Settlement, in Butterworth, where the human rights of the residents are being violated.

See letter to the SAHRC attachedhere.

"The people of Skiti Informal Settlement have been living in inhumane conditions since raw sewage started flowing into streets and their houses three months ago," said Chantel King MP - DA Phesheya Kwenciba Constituency Leader.

"This situation was brought to my attention on 27 April 2018 whilst conducting an oversight inspection of the settlement. The stench of sewage in streets and the overflow into a nearby river was almost unbearable.

"A follow-up inspection on 29 June revealed that the situation had worsened and except for the stinking streets and contaminated river, the sewage was also spilling into some of the shacks."

King said that she also saw children playing close to the sewage spill in the streets, posing a daily health risk by being exposed to an unhygienic environment.

"On 17 July 2018, I wrote to the Mayor of the Amathole District Municipality (ADM), Nomfusi Nxawe, to bring the situation to her attention as ADM is responsible for water and sanitation in this area, but no response has been received. See letter attachedhere.

"Last week I returned to the settlement to find that that the sewage had still not been cleared by the district municipality and on 26 July 2018, I went to the East London offices of the ADM and personally handed the letter to the Mayor and requested her to intervene urgently," she added.

"It is a clear indication that the ANC government does not care about the health and safety of the people of Butterworth. The Bill of Rights states that every South African has the right to a safe and healthy environment. The plight of the residents of Skiti has fallen on deaf ears for months - they have been robbed of their dignity."