Shortage of vehicles for Telkom technicians

2015-07-23 06:00
PHOTO: Jonathan Burton

Several vehicles were parked at Telkom in Oribi.

PHOTO: Jonathan Burton Several vehicles were parked at Telkom in Oribi.

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

TELKOM technicians have been unable to attend to customer complaints because they allegedly have no vehicles.

The company recently changed contractors managing its vehicle fleet, resulting in the shortage of ­vehicles.

The previous contractor was Debis, and Bidvest took over from 1 May.

The problem is countrywide as this was a national decision.

Sources claimed that for the past week many technicians in Pietermaritzburg have been at their base in Oribi­, unable to work.

Telkom denied that their employees­ did not work, saying they had been on duty during the [change-over] period and had tried to deal with the challenge of cars.

The Witness visited the Telkom yard and found a number of cars parked there. Some of them were unmarked, with no ladders or Telkom logos.

An official at the yard said the technicians had been unable to work for two days.

“There was a new contractor appointed who brought in some plain cars that technicians could not use. They did not work for two days, but they have now resumed work and some new cars have been brought in,” he said.

However, a local businessman told a different story. He said for the previous week his business phone lines had been down and technicians had not been able to attend to them.

“I went there and spoke to one of the officials who told me that many people had been affected. The technicians cannot work because the cars they have been provided with by the new contractor are not suitable. Even as we speak, my phone line is still down,” he said last week.

“We understand that many people are affected by this.”

Sinah Phochana, Telkom’s executive for PR corporate, said the changeover had been a huge project resulting in 5 500 cars across the country needing to be manufactured and customised.

“A changeover of service providers of this magnitude requires significant operational changes and requires a large number of new purpose-built vehicles­ to be available from the manufacturers­.

“As a consequence, Bidvest is utilising some short-term rental vehicles for the month of July, while the remainder of the new vehicles are registered and delivered to Telkom,” said Phochana.

Phochana said by the end of July, the complete new fleet will be in operation.

“Telkom and Bidvest are working closely together on this handover, and neither party expects there to be significant­ or material operational issues as a result of this handover.”

Phochana said the disruptions had been minimal.

“We cannot deny that one or two customers were affected.

“Our workers were on duty. Where there were shortages of cars, they doubled up.”

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
NEXT ON NEWS24X publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.