From IOL, by Quinton Mtyala, 17th December 2009
A senior Western Cape High Court judge was called out of bed in the early hours yesterday to force the shutdown of a nightclub after complaints that it was contravening an earlier court order. Tuesday night’s Kinky Afro street party at the Chrome nightclub received the go-ahead on Monday from Judge Dennis Davis, on condition it would not exceed the City of Cape Town’s public area noise regulation of 80 decibels. Just after 2am yesterday, Judge Davis was summoned to his chambers by the lawyers for Abilio Frazzitta, the owner of the Urban Chic Hotel, who had earlier failed in his court bid to have the street party stopped. He had argued that it would never be able to stick to the 80dB limi
Frazzitta’s lawyers argued that Chrome nightclub was in violation of its permit after noise meters were placed outside the venue. He said the noise levels fluctuated between 85dB and 105dB, and out of frustration he called his lawyer to the scene. At 2.30am Davis ordered the party be stopped, which meant the venue had to close after Chrome’s owner, Shaan Nordien, earlier moved the party from the street to inside the club in an attempt to appease Frazzitta’s lawyer. Antony Arvan, representing Frazzitta, said he was considering whether to institute contempt-of-court charges against Nordien. The bash closed off Pepper Street, between Long and Loop streets, with sound rigs and stages erected to accommodate more than 7 000 people who were expected by organisers. On Monday, outside court, Nordien agreed that the sound at the outdoor street party would not exceed 80d
Frazzitta, in response to the closure order, said it was a victory for “the small people” who could not legally fight against the violations of their rights. “We need a balance. We’re not saying that we want to change the heritage of Long Street, but the perception needs to change. People live, work and play here. When your bed is trembling the noise is excessive,” Frazzitta said. Nordien said he was considering a damages claim against Frazzitta after losing “lots of money” through the club’s closure. He was also planning to take legal action against the city, saying that by not granting him an exemption to exceed 80dB it had caused him financial damage.