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Wednesday Jan 02, 2013

Blowout New Year's bash sets Northcliff residents' teeth on edge

An illegal New Year's Eve house party in Joburg's quiet residential suburb of Northcliff - attended by at least 5 000 people who partied through till 6am yesterday - has left neighbours angry but intimidated.

Some of the residents of Vancouver Place were so upset by the loud, drunk masses whose cars and taxis clogged the road and access roads that they sought refuge at the homes of friends and family.

Permits are needed for events attended by such large numbers of people, particularly when marquees are erected and liquor sold. Various other requirements must also be satisfied when a party of such magnitude takes place, including informing metro police and health, fire and safety officials.

But ward councillor Steve Kotze said no permits had been issued for the party.

"As ward councillor, I should have known if such a party was happening, but was given no notification. So this party was illegal. There is a joint operations committee, consisting of all affected council departments, which has to issue numerous permits for such an event. The ward councillor has to give permission for such a large event to take place," said Richards.

Gert de Preez, an immediate neighbour, said he arrived home at 2am and had difficulty driving down the street to his home because of the cars, taxis and people in the street.

"There were cars parked everywhere, with drunk people falling about and sleeping on verges. I made the mistake of shouting at them, and they didn't stop ringing my doorbell to annoy me," he said.

Carol Bryce said the evening was a nightmare. "We are not party poopers. We understand that it was New Year's

AEve and that people do party. But not on this scale in a quiet neighbourhood. We called the police, who said permission had been given, but only until midnight. When we called again after 12 o'clock, they said they would come, but did not arrive.

"The DJ went on until 4.30am over loudspeakers, and partygoers remained until well after 6am.

"We had no sleep and we have a newborn in the house. In the morning, taxis parked outside in the street and started their own party."

Bryce said it was the third time a large party had been held in the house, which stands vacant and is situated at the end of Hollywood Drive and adjoins two empty stands which belong to the City of Joburg.

Dubbed "Big Momma Wet 'n' Wild" according to an advertising pamphlet, the party had been professionally organised, with tickets sold through Computicket at R300 for the VIP section in the empty house, and R100 for dancing and other sub-events on the vacant stand.

The advert said the party would run from 6pm to 6am. There would be 10 spa baths, a swimming pool, a glow-in-thedark area, a foam party area and a tattoo artist on hand.

The Star was unable to reach organiser Nthato Taydos Mogodi for comment as he failed to answer his cellphone throughout the day yesterday.

Unconfirmed reports allege that the property where the party took place belongs to Bongani Fassie, son of singer Brenda Fassie, who died of a drug overdose in 2004.

The Star

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