Home an unfinished business

2017-11-14 06:00
Relatives of the Bassardien family offer their help to finish the construction work.PHOTOS: aishah cassiem

Relatives of the Bassardien family offer their help to finish the construction work.PHOTOS: aishah cassiem

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A family from Hanover Park say they have been left distraught after a local contractor allegedly ran off with their money without completing the job.

Shafieka Bassardien says she paid Westcrete Precast R150 000 to renovate and build on her property in hope safeguarding her family from “gang-ridden surroundings”.

But it turned out badly for her at the Shurwood Walk property.

“The first few days went well, but things started changing when the guys started to develop sloppy workmanship. We also started having problems soon after as the work done wasn’t to our liking.”

Bassardien says they paid R150 000.

“We gave him all our money, and even gave extra. He was to complete the job, which included a fancy wendy house, gates, roofing, kitchen cupboards and much more. He never kept his word and the materials he purchased for the job were different from what we wanted and expected. He charged us three times the price for cheap material,” she claims.

“He came up with structures completely different from what we wanted and left it incomplete. When confronted, he said it shouldn’t be a problem, he could fix it up as it was touch-up work. At one stage we asked him when he would finish the roof, and requested the sheeting for it. He said he needed R3000 [more].”

The frustrated client says the workers started coming in late and did not even pitch up on some occasions.

“I told him this was unprofessional and he kept making excuses,” she says. “The contractor says his life is in danger because of a worker who overheard me making a joke, saying he would be robbed for running away with my money. He knows he took all our money and never brought all the material.”

Bassardien’s husband had been working at the local post office for more than 25 years and took early retirement two months ago. The couple says the situation has affected the entire family.

“My children have to sleep in a bakkie in our yard because the wendy house is incomplete,” she says.

“If he does not want to come back, then at least bring our remaining material. We will find someone else to finish up the job, which we are already doing. This is our hard-earned money.”

Contractor Adiel Abrahams says he fears for his safety so he and his workers will not return to the Bassardiens.

“We have been working at this family’s home for the past two months. We cannot take chances, especially after Mrs Bassardien spoke to gangsters to sort me out,” he says.

“I have been working in this industry for the past 20 years and know what goes on. They overheard her on the day and she came back, saying it was a joke. I have asked my workers to go back to complete the job and they refused. There is no reason for going back at all.”

Abrahams denies using cheap material for the job.

“I have always used good material and when delivered on site, the family never complained and never refused it. All the material is at their premises. The amount of money used to finish off the remaining work will be much more than what she owes us,” he says.

“We did a lot of work at their place and every time we had to change it because they couldn’t make up their mind. This cost me a lot of money as well and is also the reason it took longer to finish.”

He says Bassardien stills owes about R3000 for labour.

“Mrs Bassardien was always aggressive with my workers, treating them badly and we just accepted it. Every morning she would argue with us, because this is her personality,” says Abrahams. “Until the point she threatened me with gangsters. I just said: ‘This is it,’ and I took my workers away.”

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