City turns to court over 'illegal' billboard

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Pretoria - The City of Johannesburg has obtained a court order to prevent the illegal erection of a billboard in Sandton.

"A court order was obtained in the South Gauteng High Court to prevent the further construction of the advertising hoarding in defiance of the City's by-laws. The erection of scaffolding on the site, between Sandton drive and Marie streets, have been halted," the City said.

The matter was taken to court because the owners of the property and an advertising company did not follow the procedures to apply for permission to construct the advertising sign, it added.

The respondents in the case were 92-94 4th Street Parkmore (Pty) Ltd; Abelengani Property Developments and Wideopen Platform.

The court action is part of a wider programme to enforce City by-laws related to illegal advertising.

The Johannesburg Metro Police Department has also begun removing illegal posters and advertising signs that have become an eyesore for residents in recent months, the City said.

Councillor Ruby Mathang, a member of the Mayoral Committee for Development Planning and Urban Management, said illegal posters, advertising signs and graffiti had a negative impact on Joburg's image and affects the quality of life of residents and business community.

"The City has identified all illegal signage and outdoor advertising and, together with the Sheriff's office, we are now rolling out a programme to remove them without fear of favour," Mathang said.
The next step will be to clamp down on habitual infringers of the City's land use and building control regulations.

"Our action sends a clear message to polluters and by-law offenders that we are prepared to protect our urban environment," he said.