Truck fixer in a fix

2011-05-27 00:00

THE Hibiscus Coast Municipality has vowed to deal with a mechanic whom it contracted to fix a truck after it found that it has been parked illegally at his home for several days.

The mechanic, who is on the municipality’s database, was to have taken the truck to a workshop, but residents raised concern when the vehicle was seen parked at his home in Mitchell Drive, Port Shepstone.

A concerned resident alleged that the municipal truck had been parked there for weeks.

“This truck was apparently given to this person to fix it and he checked it for few days and left it there in his yard.

“Why, in the first place, would a big organisation like the municipality give an individual the work to fix a vehicle of the municipality?

“This person does not even have a company to fix or repair cars,” she said on condition of anonymity.

Another municipal truck was reportedly parked outside a house in Athlone Drive North, also for weeks.

Municipal spokesperson Simon Soboyisa said the truck in Mitchell Drive was taken to the mechanic for repairs about two or three weeks ago.

He confirmed that the mechanic is on the municipality’s database, but said it is illegal for him to park the truck at his premises or operate a car repair business in that part of the town without a permit.

“Our understanding was that he would take the truck to his workshop and not park it at his residential premises.

“We are investigating why the truck has been parked there and necessary measures will be taken if any … act that jeopardises the municipality’s daily operations is found to have been committed,” said Soboyisa.

“Keeping municipal property in one’s residence is illegal and if the mechanic is found to have done that he will be penalised and could be struck off the municipal database.

“He could also be penalised for operating a business in a residential area, if he is found to have been doing that,” added Soboyisa.

As for the truck parked on the pavement in Athlone Drive, Soboyisa said he would personally investigate the matter as no one seemed to be giving him reports.

Democratic Alliance caucus leader Doug Rawlins said municipal tenders should be given to reputable people.

“Tendering should be an open and transparent process, and should not be based on political connectedness. We will investigate the truck matter to see if everything was done according to the book,” he said.

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