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Squabble delays delivery of chiefs' cars

By unknown | Apr 04, 2008 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Frank Maponya

Frank Maponya

Limpopo Premier Sello Moloto's office has not yet delivered the 82 vehicles acquired for traditional leaders five months after the vehicles were bought.

This is because of a dispute about the ownership and management of the vehicles valued at R11million.

A symbolic handover of the vehicles took place sometime in January this year.

This was after a resolution at the traditional leaders' conference last year that the government must provide them with transport.

The provincial government still has to buy 91 more vehicles and a budget needs to be worked out for this purpose.

Acting spokesman for the premier, Victor Mufamadi, said they hoped to settle the issue amicably soon.

"We are aware that there are problems about the ownership and management of the vehicles in question."

One of the problems, he said, was that the traditional leaders wanted to own the vehicles, despite the fact that they were bought by the government.

"The traditional leaders want full ownership of the vehicles," Mufamadi said.

"But they also want the government to maintain the vehicles for them, which is not feasible."

He said the traditional leaders had raised concerns about the maintenance of the vehicles, saying they would not be able to maintain them.

Among other contentious issues was the markings on the cars, which the recipients were not happy with, according to Mufamadi.

The cars were marked on both sides to reflect that they belong to the premier's office and this did not sit well with the chiefs, he said.

"They [traditional leaders] want those markings removed and that is also under discussion."

Congress of Traditional Leaders of South Africa in Limpopo chairman Kgoshi Setlamorago Thobejane said they had raised objections because the cars were marked on the bodywork and the registration numbers.

"Magoshi (chiefs) must be seen as semi-politicians and Thobejane said.

He said the problem was that if the cars were marked and government-registered the chiefs would be restricted in terms of their trips.

"We should be allowed to have a situation where our privacy is respected because we are politicians in our own right," he said.


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