Engineer testifies on Tongaat mall

08 September 2014

An engineer from PCP Engineering Consultants, Pieter Pretorius, has testified before the Tongaat Mall Commission that although he was not impressed with the accuracy of the construction of the Mall, it was not an “irregular structure, nor was it a high- rise building”. Pretorius was mandated to investigate the design of the Tongaat Mall.

Pretorius told the Commission that based on his observations of the Mall structure he would have used larger columns for support.

Advocate Saleem Khan, who represents Gralio, at the Inquiry accused Pretorius of evading questions to protect Andre Ballack, the contracting engineer.

Ian Topping, an advocate representing eThekwini Municipality in the Inquiry, said had the “stop notice” been heeded the Commission would not been in place today.

Advocate Topping told the Commission that the Municipality intends to take legal action against those who proceeded to build the Mall without approval of plans.

The Thongathi (Tongaat) Mall Commission of Inquiry was appointed following the structural collapse of the Mall that led to the death of two workers and injury to 29 others.
The Section 32 hearing was instituted by the Department of Labour in terms of the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act – to gather evidence against parties whose negligence
resulted in occupational injuries and death of workers.

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