Residents not in favour of tower

Digtebij Supermarket in Joubert Street.

Brantwood residents threatened to boycott a supermarket when they heard a cell tower was planned for the site but the owner of the business is a tenant and with no say over what his landlord does on the property.

Last month, the Municipal Planning Tribunal approved the application by Warren Petterson Planning, on behalf of an undisclosed cellular network, for a 15m tower on the corner of Joubert and Digtebij streets, Kuils River.

The owner of Digtebij Supermarket rents the building from a supermarket chain.

The Northern News tried to speak to the owner of the shop. He was introduced to the reporter only as Mr Hussain, but he spoke very poor English and did not understand what was asked of him.

A shop assistant tried to help but declined to give her name. She said residents had come to the shop and confronted Mr Hussain after getting letters calling for public comment on the mast, but he did not want the tower on the property either.

Thirty-five of the surrounding residents, including Mr Hussain, signed a petition against it. Two people also sent letters of objection.

Gail Greyvensteyn, in her letter of objection, said her home was a mere 6 metres from the proposed site of the tower, and she was concerned about the possible health implications of the mast being so close by.

“There is already talk among the residents that they are going to boycott Digtebij Supermarket, as they think the owner will be paid for allowing the erection of the tower.”

WarrenPettersonPlanning said current research had “reached a point whereby scientists are satisfied that base stations do not pose a health threat”.

The firm said the supermarket was a tenant on the property not the owner.

“We have been authorised by the property owner to submit this application.”

The Municipal Planning Tribunal approved the application on Tuesday September 12 with the proviso that the mast be disguised as a tree.