South Africa: Joburg in Crisis After 2,500 City Cars Confiscated

Johannesburg’s crime-busting campaign for the festive season could be derailed after more than 2,500 City of Joburg vehicles were confiscated by car rental company Avis.

As well as metro police cars, City Power trucks and Joburg water bakkies were taken away on Wednesday, throwing service provision for the city’s six million residents into disarray.

McKinnely Mitchell, who speaks on behalf of the MMC for Group Corporate and Shared Services, Leah Knott, confirmed the confiscation of the fleet in a statement.

The fleet was confiscated after the National Treasury flagged the tender awarded to Avis and Afrirent in 2020, declared it irregular, and ordered the city to cancel it.

“We inherited this mess from the ANC: an irregular contract that had been constantly extended and no investigation done,” said Mitchell.

It is understood that the contentious fleet tender – valued at over R2 billion – was terminated at the end of October by the DA-led multi-party government.

The ANC’s multi-party government proposed to the council that the fleet remain in place until investigations were concluded. But power changed hands shortly afterwards and the DA’s multi-party government followed Treasury’s instructions.

The city has launched a probe to establish whether Afrirent had made any payments to politicians, said Mitchell.

“A simple glance at the numbers showed that the city was not getting value for money.”

The tenders for fire engines (red fleet) and the Pikitup waste management fleet were separate and would not be disrupted.

MMC of Public Safety David Tembe told Scrolla.Africa that he was confident that this would not cripple the city’s crime prevention campaign.

“We will continue to prioritise the safety of residents of Joburg. The city officials are dealing with this matter.

“From our point of view as Public Safety, we are on track to protect and reinforce the rule of law in the city.”

The city of Joburg has been at the centre of a tug-of-war between coalition governments, one DA-led and the other led by the ANC.

ANC Joburg leader and former mayor Dada Morero alleged that it was non-payment of services by the DA-led multi-party government that led to the confiscation.

Pictured above: Over 2,500 City of Johannesburg vehicles have been confiscated

Source: @MayorDadaMorero

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