Don't air your dirty laundry on the KZN South Coast

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Don't air your dirty laundry on the KZN South Coast

New municipal bylaw targets the noisy, the naked and those causing a nuisance

Journalist

Airing your laundry on the KwaZulu-Natal South Coast could land you in jail, or facing a R25,000 fine.
As bizarre as it might sound, this is just one of the offences under a new nuisance and behaviour in public places bylaw at the Ray Nkonyeni Municipality. The law came into effect on January 1, 2018.
And already the municipality is claiming victories, with arrests of over a 100 female and male prostitutes.
Municipal manager Sihle Mbili has urged residents of the municipality - which incorporates the towns of Hibberdene, Margate, Port Edward, Port Shepstone and Southbroom - to co-operate with the new bylaw to avoid prosecution.The law prohibits residents from hanging their washing in public on fences, walls, balconies or verandas. And those caught publicly relieving themselves in public, spitting, performing sexual acts, begging, appearing nude, drinking alcohol or being intoxicated and taking drugs will face the wrath of the new bylaw.
According to the bylaw, no person can just lie or sleep on a bench, seating place, street or sidewalk in a way that prevents others using it. Residents are also not allowed to start or burn fires unless they are for the purpose of making a braai in permitted areas.
The South Coast municipality is home to the Mpenjati Beach, where the South African National Naturist Association (Sanna) wants to establish a nudist beach. However, the matter is currently under review.Another no-no is the slaughtering of animals for cultural purposes, except in a free-standing residential property out of site of the public and with written consent from the municipality.
Noise, litter and skating is also outlawed. So is sleeping in a stationary motor vehicle except in an emergency, or residing in a motor vehicle for longer than 24 hours unless that person does so for resting after a long journey after using that vehicle.The municipality’s head of department for public safety, Sibusiso Nzimande, said their action plan was to get maximum enforcement on this by-law. This will include:

Workshops of all law enforcement personnel, Community Policing Forum, security companies, business forums and ratepayers association about the by-law from January;
Preparing the admission of guilty list for chief magistrate’s approval before March 15;
Putting up signage on the by-law in public places before March 24; and
Allocating designated braai areas in beaches.

“We started enforcing the by-law on the January 1 and in Margate alone we have recorded over 150 arrests of prostitutes. We have also made many arrests for drinking in public. These statistics are available at Margate SAPS police station. As for hanging of washing out in buildings, we intend to issue notices to all buildings which have identified as culprits on this,” said Nzimande.
Sean Larkins, in a newsletter to Southbroom residents, asked residents to familiarise themselves with the bylaws “as ignorance cannot be accepted as an excuse for a breach of it”...

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