Mechanics hold state cars HOSTAGE

Photo by iStock
Photo by iStock

MANY areas across the country are getting poor service delivery.

And in Ekurhuleni, the problem is being made worse by the fact that hundreds of state vehicles are being held hostage by mechanics.

More than 200 mechanics claimed the municipality owed them billions of rands, but is refusing to pay up.

So they’ve decided to keep the vehicles until they get what is due to them.

The mechanics told Daily Sun in the past, they would release the vehicles and agree to be paid later, but the municipality failed to honour its agreements.

The SunTeam recently visited some of their workshops and saw ambulances, waste trucks, grass-cutting tractors, Metro police cars and other municipal vehicles.

More than 350 vehicles are being held by angry mechanics.

One mechanic said: “We sent our invoices, but we are not paid. The vehicles end up gathering dust and taking up space.”

Mechanics said some of the vehicles had been standing in their workshops for more than three years.

They said the situation was costing them money as the vehicles took up storage space, which cost up to R400 a vehicle per day.

Another mechanic said: “We cannot take the chance of releasing the cars to them because we know we’re not going to be paid.

“We see a lot of municipal vehicles we fixed on the road, but we have not received a cent for our work.”

They said some mechanics couldn’t pay rent.

“We could be taking private cars but we don’t have the space, and we end up losing profit,” said another mechanic.

Ekurhuleni municipal spokesman Zweli Dlamini said they’ll have to do their own investigations and check if the service providers were on their database.

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