Plans are in place within the Makana Municipality to buy a new car for the Executive Mayor, with Council determining that the current one is costing ratepayers a lot of money.
Plans are in place within the Makana Municipality to buy a new car for the Executive Mayor, with Council determining that the current one is costing ratepayers a lot of money. When asked during a recent video interview with Grocott's Mail what car he would be choosing, Executive Mayor Zamuxolo Peter said he had nothing to with the purchasing of the car: it was the Council's responsibility.
“I don't know what type of car they are going to buy because I’m far from that. All I need is transport to move from point A to point B, so that when you say, 'Mayor there is problem in Joza,' I must be there within no time” Peter said in the video interview.
The Selection Process
Acting chief financial officer Marius Crouse also confirmed that the mayor had nothing to do with the purchasing of the car. In an interview with Grocott's Mail on Friday, he said the Council was in the process of preparing a tender to be issued within a month for the new car.
“During the budgeting process it was proposed by the finance committee that R800 000 would be the maximum amount for the proposals we get, but that doesn't mean we are going to buy a car that costs R 800 000 for the mayor” said Crouse.
He added, “We are trying to scale down the specs, and the old vehicle will be traded in.” Crouse said that the current car was no longer on a maintenance plan and the repairs for it were costing the municipality a lot of money.
“When it is in for repairs, we have to hire a vehicle for the mayor, which is another cost. We are trying to save the ratepayers money by getting another car” he said.
Costs to ratepayers
Councillor Piryawaden Ranchhod, who is the chairperson of the Finance, Administration Monitoring and Evaluation committee, confirmed that the mayoral car was costing a lot.
“That car has been more in the garage than on the road. We are hoping to get a better quote from local dealerships because that will mean the car will be serviced locally and it doesn't have to go to Port Elizabeth or East London. We are also hoping to stimulate local businesses by doing that” said Ranchhod.
Crouse said they were in the process of proposing a petrol card for the mayoral car, which will have a limit of R5 000 a month. The council has not made a decision yet about that, but the purpose of a petrol card is for convenience. The current car uses a lot of petrol and we have to give the driver cash advances to fill in petrol, Crouse said.
He said there was a logbook that listed all the mayor's trips and that the driver would need to bring in petrol slips to his department every month for verification.
Crouse clarified that the Mayor used the car only for official business and not for himself.
He has his personal car. He gets invited by the province or national government sometimes, for example. He can go to Graaff Reinet on official business and he uses this car.
The car is not used for personal travels and is not used when travelling on behalf of the ANC.
(BMW X5 is an example vehicle. Calculations based on information found on the official BMW website. Calculations by Desireee Schirlinger, text by Gregory Peake.)
Makana financial overhaul on the cards