The office of the Motor Industry Ombudsman (MIO) offers
motorists a uniquely focused and totally free service in resolving disputes that
arise between them and the motor trade.
“The sole duty of this office is to handle such problems in a totally
independent fashion and both the motorist and the motor dealer or company are
bound to abide by the decision of the ombudsman,” says Johan van Vreden,
ombudsman for the motor industry.
“There are a number of trade associations within the motor industry that also
offer customers a conflict resolution service. This service is but one of many
services that they offer to their membership which consists of operators in the
industry. Major services they render consist of wage negotiations with unions,
the handling of pension and sick fund administration and keeping their
membership abreast of and advising them on issues such as new laws like the
National Credit Act and BEE requirements.
“Obviously the first responsibility of these associations is to the general
welfare of their membership. Vehicle owner satisfaction is not their major
“Another important difference between the MIO and trade associations is that the
latter require customers with unresolved complaints to pay a fee for their
service, while the service rendered by the ombudsman’s office is completely
Though the ombudsman’s office is funded by the motor companies, they are
contractually bound to abide by the decisions of the ombudsman in all
“We stay in close contact with NAAMSA and they have responded very positively to
the service rendered by our office,” says Van Vreden.
The Motor Industry Ombudsman of SA can be contacted on (012) 841-2945 or fax
your complaint to (012) 841-2842. You can also visit the MIO’s website at
www.miosa.co.za, or e-mail your complaint to firstname.lastname@example.org.