Students are competing with rats for space in a Wits residence. According to some Sunnyside residents, the rat problem has escalated and they find the rodents invading their space more often.

Vuvuzela has observed rats running between the shrubs at the Ecological garden opposite the Sunnyside Residence on East campus. Students, who asked to remain anonymous, were forthcoming about the pest problems they have encountered in the residence.

One student described an incident where she left a pear on her bed and came back to find it had small bites. She suspected that it was a rat until it was confirmed when she found rat droppings. The 21 year old 4th year student says her complaints have fallen on deaf ears.

“It may be just a job to them… but to us it is our home”, said the student.

When contacted about the complaints regarding rats in Sunnyside Residence, head of ground facilities management, Andries Norval said he was aware of the problem. Norval said he has “issued a job card” to a company called Strictly Hygiene to deal with the problem.

Another resident said she had seen rats outside the Sunnyside reception area.  “I believe the bins outside Sunnyside entrance to be the main culprit” said the Master’s student

Norval was not aware that the bins outside Sunnyside were overflowing. He said he would follow the matter up and that the rubbish bins were supposed to be on “the south side of the building”.

Vuvuzela has footage of the bins overflowing at 2PM on Tuesday, March 20.

A grounds worker replied that the bins were emptied daily except for weekends but it was hard to imagine that the amount of rubbish filmed had been accumulated in less than 24 hours by 195 students.