Report: City fleet poorly managed

2018-09-26 15:45
“We see the vehicles being used  after hours. The officials are obviously misusing our vehicles. They are used for their families, friends and that’s not on.”

“We see the vehicles being used after hours. The officials are obviously misusing our vehicles. They are used for their families, friends and that’s not on.”

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The municipal public accounts committee (Mpac) is concerned about the management of the City’s fleet following allegations of internal control deficiencies and the misuse of vehicles.

The councillors were responding to the final internal audit report on fleet management which revealed several challenges within the fleet department. These included outdated policies, a high vacancy rate, vehicles not being serviced annually, non-renewal of expired vehicle licences and a failure to conduct competency pre-tests for municipal drivers.

The internal audit team could not obtain evidence to confirm that daily trip authority forms or logbooks were completed for 25 trips that were part of the sample audited.

Three heavy duty drivers who were tested failed the assessment and one of them also had an expired public driver’s permit.

The fleet department also did not have service level agreements with the business units, such as infrastructure and community services, that use the vehicles to carry out their duties.

“Business units are held accountable for all fleet under their control,” said assurance manager Sithabile Msomi in her report.

She said the municipality could suffer financial losses due to theft as some vehicles had inadequate tracking systems.

Msomi also highlighted costs that could be incurred for maintaining vehicles used by incompetent drivers.

She said other unnecessary expenditure would be in traffic fines for expired licences and refuted claims for the 30 vehicles that were not insured.

The councillors who sit on the Mpac were concerned that there were no daily checks on vehicles before and after the trips to detect damages and confirm the mileage.

They said the lack of enforcement provided fertile ground for abuse of vehicles, which had been alleged in the past.

“We see the vehicles being used on weekends and after hours … The officials are obviously misusing our vehicles. They are used for their families, friends and that’s not on,” said ANC councillor Najma Ahmed.

She said there should be a dedicated contact number to report cases of abuse.

Acting fleet manager Lindiwe Mthethwa said there was no proper handover when the former fleet manager Mthandeni Ngcobo resigned in April. “We are starting everything afresh ...”

ANC councillor Manqoba Ngubo said it did not make sense to him that the department had to start from scratch just because one official left.

“He may have been a manager but he had subordinates who should have known what was happening in that section.”


Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  msunduzi municipality

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