Joburg carnival to explode in colour

Edward Tsumele

Edward Tsumele

Everything is in place for Johannesburg's increasingly popular New Year's Eve carnival.

The carnival is always an explosion of colour, movement and sound as it winds through the streets of downtown Jozi.

The parade kicks off at 2pm on New Year's Eve from Kotze Street in Hillbrow. It will be joined by participants from other assembly points in Parktown, Yeoville and Berea and work its way to Newtown just in time for sunset.

The inaugural carnival in 2004 was a response to the community's need to have a celebratory event on New Year's Eve.

The absence of any planned activity for inner-city residents on new year's eve had created an unfortunate tradition of vandalism in previous years.

The Joburg Carnival offered an attractive alternative to antisocial behaviour. More importantly, it got residents from various communities working together to create floats and choreograph dances.

As in previous years, safety remains a priority for this year's carnival.

Emergency Medical Solutions, Pikitup and the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department will be there to ensure it runs as smoothly as possible.

Police have confirmed the effectiveness of the carnival in reducing fatalities on New Year's Eve.

Five years ago, police reported at least seven fatalities on New Year's night. Last year, a mere year after the carnival was introduced, not a single death was reported to police.