The Missing Lift

Noseweek|December 2019

The Missing Lift
No clear skies for Wonderboom Airport as their wheelchair compliancy and mothballed infrastructure lands them in more hot water
Susan Puren

A LIFT IMPORTED FROM SWEDEN and worth almost R5 million, which was supposed to make Tshwane’s Wonderboom National Airport wheelchair compliant has been in storage since 2017 because of supply chain mismanagement. Storage costs alone are now running at R60,000-plus.

In a recent scathing report by the oversight committee for roads and transport in Tshwane Metro, NTV Multi-purpose Contract CC was said to have been paid R3m in advance but never installed the lift. The committee found lapses in governance, supply chain maladministration and irregular expenditure at Wonderboom.

However the report was hastily withdrawn from the agenda of the monthly council meeting held at the end of October.

Following Noseweek’s recent damning revelations (noses240&241), the council’s general mismanagement of Wonderboom Airport has, it seems, become too much of a political hot potato for open debate.

Victor Netshiungani, the sole director of NTV tells Noseweek that his company was in fact short-paid by Brainwave Electrical, a local cooperative (read BEE middleman) that was appointed for the work by the airport and its owner, the City of Tshwane.

“We were advised that the City of Tshwane was trying to develop cooperatives by merging them with companies, since these (council-sponsored) cooperatives did not have resources and the required skills,” says Netshiungani.

He told Noseweek that a Tshwane official, Tshiamo Sebatso, directed him to work with the cooperative. Noseweek has established that Sebatso is a finance clerk at the municipality’s supply chain management and that she was seconded to Wonderboom for a short time in 2017.

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December 2019