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Thursday Feb 07, 2013

Tshwane cleans up Pretoria city centre

The Tshwane Metro Police will this year continue Operation I Can, its clean-up initiative targeted at the inner city.

As part of this initiative, which started last August, the metro police last week demolished a dilapidated building on the corner of WF Nkomo and Kgosi Mampuru streets.

Spokesman Senior Superintendent Isaac Mahamba said during the operation they looked for all types of criminal activity and irregularities related to dilapidated buildings, illegal structures and contraventions of by-laws.

The building belonged to the city. "It was recommended that the building be destroyed. There are no plans for developing the property as yet," said SA councillor Sam Moimane.

The property has been rezoned for business purposes.

Thomas Mangwane who had been living in the old building for more than 10 years, claimed he owned the property but Moimane rejected his claim. "He applied for rights to the property but it was never approved."

Mahamba said operations were planned for at least once a week and involved about 30 metro police officers and the SAPS.

Last Thursday, the metro police confiscated more than 500g of dagga, impounded four unlicensed vehicles and confiscated a trailer.

Rubble and trash were collected and disposed of to keep the streets clean. Illegal water and electricity connections were cut and three electricity accounts were disconnected due to outstanding fees ranging between R150 000 and R200 000.

Vagrants living in old buildings and on the streets were checked and taken to shelters where possible.

None of them was found to be illegal immigrants.

Successes so far

Since "Operation 1 Can" started:

  • 280 vehicles have been impounded on Church Square.

  • Five businesses have been closed down in the CBD.

  • 87 street lights have been repaired.

  • 93 homeless people have been taken to shelters.

  • 20 trees, obstructing the view of traffic cameras, have been cut down.

    Pretoria News

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