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  • Writer's pictureMBF


The community once again draw the shortest straw and more questions arise!

Sewage problems in Mafube are getting worse daily and are not being solved, garbage disposal is almost non-existent, the landfills are not maintained at all, roads are not maintained and road markings are not painted, and the list goes on... Everyone thought it was "because the municipality probably doesn't have the proper equipment". Big was the surprise when the auction of Mafube Local Municipality's (MLM) assets was announced. All the equipment, some still brand new and others just needing a little attention, was in storage...

Mafube Local Municipality's "excess to requirement" assets went under the hammer on Thursday, 9 Nov 2023 in Frankfort and Villiers. The auction was well attended. The massive interest from elsewhere is a sign that bargains were to be expected. It is sad to see how much usable, repairable and even new equipment is now no longer available for municipal service delivery.

The list of equipment sold, includes among other things, laptops, a grader, compactor, front loader, TLB, various tractors, cars, vans and even a road marking machine. There were also sewer cleaning devices to be disposed of that appeared to be brand new. With the current sewage crisis in our area, it is absolutely incomprehensible why it was also declared redundant and auctioned off.

The Mafube Mercedes Benz official car has attracted a lot of attention. It is clearly in running condition, but has been dented and needs some panel beating. Apparently the insurance on the car had not been paid up to date, and MLM couldn't afford to repair it. One wonders if this would not have cost less than renting luxury official cars for political officials... It is unknown if the accident in which the car was involved was ever reported to the SAPS. Was anyone ever held accountable for the damage done and was disciplinary action taken? Whether any official was ever held responsible for the negligence by allowing the insurance on the vehicle to lapse, is also unknown.

Mafube Business Forum (MBF) repeatedly asked the question during the October 2022 public meetings: "Are municipal vehicles covered by insurance?". Neither the Municipal Manager nor the Administrator could provide sufficient evidence of this.

What emerges clearly is that the community is once again to bear the brunt. It appears that there is no oversight of the purchase, operation and maintenance of municipal assets.

• Why wasn't a technical assessment done and quotations obtained to repair the valuable equipment?

• Why was the MPM Council Resolution of 31 October 2022 ignored? It states that an attempt must first be made to sell the items at reserved prices, before putting up for auction.

It will be interesting to see the final proceeds of the auction, and then compare it to the replacement value of the items sold. MBF hope that the proceeds of the auction will at least be used for service delivery to the community.

MBF invites residents, business owners and ratepayers to visit our offices at 18A Church Street, Frankfort on Mondays to Thursdays from 08h30 to 16h00 and Fridays 08h30 to 12h00. Call or send a WhatsApp message to Marina on 079 145 4295. Visit our website and follow us on Facebook.

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