The City of Johannesburg has made plans to totally dismantle all illegal gates around communities in suburban areas.
The city, through the Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) sounded a note of warning that all illegal closures of public streets for security reasons will no longer be tolerated and will be removed.
To prove how serious it is on plans to get rid of these illegal gates, the JRA went on Thursday, to forcibly remove several illegal booms and pedestrian gates in Hurlingham Manor North.
The agency drew the attention of the Hurlingham North Residents’ Association (HNRA) to the number of contraventions in Hurlingham Manor North which have been granted 30 days to comply.
The association said it was awaiting clarification on whether or not it was allowed to install electronic gates, before taking any further action.
The electronic gates justified the need for a facial recognition mechanism in its electronic booms, following a spate of “follow-home” robberies.
According to JRA’s managing director Dr Sean Phillips, those illegal gates did not comply with the city’s security access restriction policy of 2014, hence should be removed. He said among other things, two pedestrian gates, meant to be open at all times, had been left permanently locked.
He said HNRA had applied for, and been approved, security-access restriction on February 2 last year, for a period of two years. However, the following conditions imposed had been contravened:
- Two pedestrian gates, meant to be left open 24 hours a day, had been left permanently locked, leading to increased travel distances for pedestrians and motorists along Republic Road. No reasons were provided to justify the total absence of pedestrian access at the two roads.
- Four electronic access-control points, as well as two illegal palisade gates, were confiscated. These created the impression that the area is private and not accessible to all. According to the policy, no form of discrimination can be applied when granting access to a security access-restriction area such as Hurlingham Manor North, he said.
The city of Johannesburg reportedly has 383 security-access restrictions, and the city agency said it won’t relent on its decision to enforce compliance.