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Two waste recyclers shot dead at Joburg landfill site in alleged turf war

In Johannesburg, two informal recyclers were killed in an alleged turf dispute between rival waste-picking organizations. On Thursday evening, they were shot by unknown gunmen at the Robinson Deep Landfill Site. The Environment and Infrastructure Service Department (EISD) of the City of Joburg has denounced the killing. "Senseless violence has cost the lives of two individuals trying to make a living in the informal garbage industry," said Michael Sun of the department. This is unequivocally unacceptable." Pikitup [waste management service] has been attempting to create conducive circumstances to help the trash recycling sector, but criminal elements continue to infiltrate our facilities, he added.

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The circumstances surrounding the incident were apparently tied to turf rivalries among rubbish pickup organizations, according to the Sun. Although the informal rubbish picking industry offers a unique possibility for economic development, Sun believes it must be conducted in a safe and orderly manner. As a result of the event, he stated his department would take immediate steps to beef up security at the location. He's also asked the police for help in conducting random searches of anyone entering their facilities for guns and other contraband, as well as ensuring that all reclaimers working on site follow the rules and regulations. A double homicide is being probed.


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EISD Joburg Michael Sun Robinson Deep Landfill Sun


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