Samora Machel covered in stink

RESIDENTS of Cape Town's Samora Machel informal settlement in Philippi have lashed out at the city after being forced to live in stinking sewage for the past three days

A sewage pipe on Oliver Tambo Road burst on Tuesday, causing an unbearable stench - and residents say it is not the first time this has happened.

Sowetan reported six months ago that a sewage pipe had burst in the same area, leaving sewage flowing all over the place. Residents had to step on bricks if they wanted to leave their homes.

"The whole of Samora Machel is like this. We live like pigs here. But still we keep on voting. What are we voting for if we continue to live like this?" asked Nosipho Ndlela, 54.

"The worst thing is that Oliver Tambo road is the main road here. All these taxis and cars from Mitchells Plain to Wynberg pass through here, spraying the sludge even more," Ndlela said.

Vuyo Maqethuka, owner of a hair salon, said his business suffered because "nobody wants to come here because of the stink in front of my salon".

Community leader Siyabulela Mafo said the problem showed the city's disrespect for disadvantaged people.

"When people say the DA is doing nothing for poor people they are accused of politicising service delivery, but when people live with dirty water flowing in the streets, the city does not respond," Mafo said.

Cape Town official Chris Khatshwa said the problem was the city's old infrastructure.

"The city is planning to upgrade the infrastructure because this was put up in 1994 and the number of people have increased drastically. The capacity of water carried by the pipes is also increasing," he said, calling on the community to stop dumping nappies and food into the drains.