Uncut grass worries BCM’s ratepayers

Hideout for criminals after robberies, they say

BUFFALO City Metro (BCM) ratepayers are questioning how the metro could increase tariffs when they are unable to deliver basic services to the communities such as fixing potholes and cutting grass where it is needed.

TIME TO CUT : Residents say the overgrown open space in Braelyn Hills is a hideout for criminals Picture : QHAMANI LINGANI

Most of East London surbubs have been asking BCM to cut grass in their areas but with no success. The Go! visited Braelyn Hills last week and was shown a piece of land that residents claim to be a hideout spot for criminals who break into their houses and robs people.

Barry Francis from Braelyn Hills said he has spent more than R20000 in the last three months to upgrade security at his house. “We are living in terror here.

Every single day they rob people by the bridge [in Braelyn Hills] and they run to the bushes. I have been to the Environmental Affairs office, BCM and ward councillor. We have even joked about burning the bush in this area, but we don’t want to cause unnecessary fires; I mean the grass is dry and it will burn very quickly,” he said.

Residents whose houses are around this area have cut around the edges just to keep rats and snakes out of their yards. 

Mervyn Bhana confirmed that robbers hide in the long uncut grass. “Just a couple of days ago, police were chasing guys and they ran into the grass. And in the morning, you hear the dogs barking and you also see people coming out of the bush carrying parcels. They commit a crime and come to hide their staff here. They wait for the coast to clear then they come back to fetch what they have stolen,” Bhana said.

Vuyo Ngqakayi from Gompo said he fails to understand why tariffs will increase end of the month when there are regular power failures. “They are not cutting the grass, fixing potholes and we have blocked drains in our area.

What are they doing, really? There is no service delivery, except for refuse collection. In my area, we hire private companies to cut grass. We collect R50 from each person to have grass that’s supposed to be cut my BCM cut,” he said.


  1. Kaysers Beach has the same problem. There is an overgrown plot opposit 281 Sandpiper road and a burnt down house in Partridge place. Both these vacant plots are being used by people hiding out and watching homes. In partridge our house has been burgled 3 times and the thugs were waiting in the burntdown house and overgrown plot. We tried to go to the local municipality person but he claims that his hands are chopped off. One should NOT have to be scared coming home and wondering who is watching and what has happened in the time you were away.


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