General Manager of the Public Transport Service Corporation (PTSC) Bashir Mohammed has denied claims that a million-dollar PTSC bus was auctioned off for mere peanuts last December.
Insiders claimed that the fairly new bus fetched an auction price of $9,500 during the PTSC’s auction in December last year.
“There is absolutely no truth to that,” Mohammed told Guardian Media in a brief telephone interview yesterday.
Mohammed explained that in December last year they had put up 34 PTSC buses for auction as well as a Nissan note for use only as scrap. “We can’t just dispose of State assets just like that there is a process. The engineering department will verify the condition of the buses and if they are roadworthy. If the buses can no longer operate on the road the board is then approached for approval to have these buses sold in a public auction.”
The General Manager recalled that there was a bus in 2014 that was involved in an accident that was part of the public auction for only scrap purposes. Mohammed said the auction was overseen by auctioneer Edward Soon and Company Limited.
Sources told Guardian Media that one of the buses auctioned was roughly ten years old with an HBH license plate.
Soon who spoke to Guardian Media via phone said all the units put up for auction were sold as scrap.
He said in some cases those that bought parts from the vehicles first had to remove the parts before the shell of the vehicle is removed from the compound.
“These auction sales are open to the general public. Nothing is done under the table, anyone can come and participate,” Soon said.
He said is the highest bid for an item was $9,500 and no one contested it, it would then be sold for that price.
Soon explained that there were certain guidelines that determine scrap value and said it was not like a bank trying to obtain money back on property seized where a reserved price would be usually set.
Approximately half the buses put up for auction were sold according to Soon.