By Sandile Nkambule | 2019-11-09
Following much speculation accompanied by circulating pictures of a fleet of vehicles on social media purported to be destined to the Kingdom of Eswatini, government has since set the record straight.
The ministry of public works and transport has stated that the vehicles are actually escort vehicles which were purchased in July last year.
This was yesterday disclosed by minister of public works and transport Chief Ndlaluhlaza Ndwandwe in a press statement regarding the vehicles.
According to the minister, the process to replace the existing fleet of escorts started in 2016 and is consistent with the prevailing government policy of replacing government vehicles after five years.
“The purchasing of the fleet went through the tender process in line with government policy, an order was made to the manufacturer in July 2018 at the finalisation of the tender process,” the minister said.
He stated that the ministry of public works and transport takes the opportunity to inform the public that the ministry has already taken delivery of the fleet of vehicles and motorcycles for escort duties although he did not mention where the vehicles are currently kept.
Following the speculation and the circulating pictures, Government mouthpiece Percy ‘Lumanyoka’ Simelane had on Thursday evening confirmed that the cars were purchased and belong to government.
Approached by one of the local print media in as far as the fleet is concerned on Thursday, Central Transport Administration (CTA) general Manager Washington Khumalo was reported as having said he had heard of the news of the fleet though he was not formally aware of same.
Khumalo was also reported by the publication as having said he even took the initiative to go to the Ngwenya Border Post to find out if the fleet of vehicles was indeed arriving or entered into the kingdom but said that never happened. The issue of the cars was further questioned in Parliament as some of Members of Parliament are said to have questioned Minister of Finance Neal Rijkenberg on whether government had indeed purchased the cars or not following the circulating pictures on social media.
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