Metro clams up over fight about bus system
The Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality is refusing to give answers about the fight between the board members and CEO of Spectrum Alert – the company running the city’s only functioning IPTS route.
When DA councillors demanded answers at a transport committee meeting on Thursday, the ANC maintained it was an “internal” matter.
The impasse between the Spectrum Alert board and CEO Chris King has led to disruptions of the bus service’s Cleary Park to Port Elizabeth CBD route.
At the meeting, the DA’s Rano Kayser asked why a report on the IPTS had not been tabled as had been discussed at a previous meeting.
ANC councillor Mbulelo Gidane said infrastructure and engineering boss Walter Shaidi did not have to explain.“Councillor Kayser must understand he is no longer running this IPTS, there are issues emanating into the project we can’t discuss,” he said.“Those are internal matters that we are handling and once we are ready with the report it will be presented to the committee and the council.“We are not going to be pushed behind because of gossip. Please give us space to do our work and once that work is finished we won’t [delay] taking that information to the committee.“There are internal matters and we are not going to run this IPTS through the media.”The Herald reported earlier in May that roads and transport portfolio chair Rosie Daaminds had called for Spectrum Alert’s board to be dissolved amid allegations they were trying to interfere in the administration and that some had up to five vehicles in the system.Spectrum Alert’s board turned to the Port Elizabeth High Court to force CEO Chris King to vacate the offices as he had been suspended.The court granted the temporary interdict. At Thursday’s committee meeting, Kayser questioned why there had been no report on what happened.“We are willing to give you five minutes to go and find out why there isn’t a report because out there are media reports on the possible collapse of the Cleary Park route, the mismanagement of funds and employees not being paid etc.“That report was requested but it is not here,” Kayser said.Shaidi said he had instructed that the IPTS office must report back but staff had not got around to it.DA councillor Sandile Rwexwana agreed with Kayser, saying: “Councillor Gidane is out of order because we are dealing with the minutes.“This is a clear situation of incompetence.“There is nothing that is internal. We are also internal as we are sitting here.”“It can’t be right that you have things that you want to discuss internally because we are councillors of this committee.“Your arrogance is not going to assist this committee going forward.”The meeting collapsed after the DA walked out and left the ANC and EFF without a quorum.Daaminds said she would ensure that a report was brought to the next portfolio committee meeting.