City of Joburg intensifies efforts to rid the sector of clutter caused by illegal advertising

The City of Johannesburg has called on key industry players to join hands in addressing the high level of illegality within the outdoor advertising space, which tarnishes its vision of building Joburg as a world class African megacity come 2030.


Along with its property agency, the Joburg Property Company (JPC), the City of Johannesburg (CoJ) has called on all media and property owners within the city to join hands with them in making sure that illegal outdoor advertising becomes a thing of the past.

The move will not only force all stakeholders – including local businesses, brand and media owners as well as Joburg residents – confront unattractive architecture which tarnishes Johannesburg’s image, and its chance to become a megacity by 2030‚ with its population exceeding 10 million. It will also help the city recover millions of rands it loses every year as the result of this practice.

“We’re concerned with the lack of accountability by key industry stakeholders in ensuring that advertisements are placed on legal sites. We’re now calling for all media and property owners to collaborate with the city in making sure that the we eradicate illegality in the outdoor advertising space,” JPC CEO Helen Botes said.

“More importantly, we want to educate and inform them on the processes and legislation – walking together on this new journey towards creating a clean city (and safer spaces).”

She added: “The residents of Johannesburg should understand the impact this has on the economy and the city’s aesthetics.  Illegally placed adverts take revenue out of the city and only aim to enrich a few, failing to address important issues of transformation – we would like to put an end to this.”

World class megacity in the making: City of Joburg intensifies efforts to fight illegal outdoor advertising

The CoJ has made efforts to gain active participation of all industry stakeholders. While the 2009 By-laws are still applicable, the city has declared a transitional period to allow all stakeholders an opportunity to declare their advertising assets to the city in order to participate in the dispensation.

During this period, the CoJ, working will various stakeholders, aims to rid the sector of illegality and clutter in order to increase the value of the sector for all while resolving challenges regarding the City’s By-laws with the need for any further litigation.

Non-compliance, city’s officials warned, has significant implications for all involved. Those who do not comply with the city’s law will be subject to a hefty fine.

Collaboration is key 

The CoJ also aims to host a series of discussions with industry stakeholders such as brand owners (who are the funders of the outdoor advertising), media owners, advertising agencies, property owners including the public sector as well as the community at large. 

These discussions will prioritise the need for collaboration between all stakeholders towards a solution driven approach at tackling illegal outdoor advertising.

“It is important for industry players to be aware that by actively placing advertisements on unauthorised spaces or simply being associated with those who commit the act, they are breaking the law,” read a statement from the CoJ.

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