Exhibitors left in the lurch following the cancellation of a motor show in Durban have spoken out, claiming that they have yet to receive official communication from the show organiser, Jayshree Parasuramen. Vendors who spoke to IOL say they have been left red-faced after backing the event, which did not happen.
The Durban Annual Motor Expo (DAME) was expected to be held at the Durban Exhibition Centre (DEC) from July 28 - 30 however, hours before, the event was called off.
In a lengthy Facebook post, Parasuramen said she decided to cancel the event due to a lack of funding.
Speaking to IOL, the KwaZulu-Natal Foundation's Ashen Ramadhar said he has yet to hear from Parasuramen.
He said he was contacted last year to take care of part of the show.
"I organised the Show and Shine segment. I got plans going from March and reached out to people on my side. There were 120 cars for the Show and Shine and all entrants made payments directly to me. I kept messaging Jayshree to find out about the finer details and she did not answer my calls or respond to my messages," Ramadhar said.
In the week of the event, Ramadhar claimed he spoke to Parasuramen, who said a meeting would be held at the venue with all vendors.
"On the day of the supposed meeting, I arrived at the DEC and found all the other vendors waiting outside. The guard told us that the payment had not been made for venue hire, and he refused to allow anyone inside. We called Jayshree again, but she did not respond. Other vendors called, and one got through to Jayshree who said she was sorting paperwork. By that time, there were trucks that arrived, and people were just waiting," Ramadhar said.
He said people travelled from all over the country, including Gauteng and Cape Town, to be a part of the event and were left disappointed.
Ramadhar said he has since paid back more than 90% of the people who paid him for the Show and Shine segment. However, he has yet to hear from Parasuramen.
Ramadhar said he had been in contact with other businesses who were meant to supply items for the event and they claimed to not have been involved in DAME.
Another vendor, Thurston and Candice Chetty of Chewy Bobar Co, have since shared their story on TikTok.
@deborahnaidoo852 This is a public announcement to shed some light in regards to the recent boched motor event that was scheduled to take place on the weekend of 28 to 30 July at the ICC, namely DURBAN ANNUAL MOTOR SHOW. We speak out on behalf of the vendors and car exhibitors alike. WE WANT ANSWERS AND REFUNDS OF OUR HARD EARND MONEY !!!!! If you are a vendor or an exhibitor please speak out and expose the people that are at fault here. Let not the community think that she is the victim here when we are the ones that are left out of pocket. #ECR Jayshree Parasuramen Durban Annual Motor Expo @East Coast Radio @jayshreeparasuramen @Devi Sankaree🇿![CDATA]>🇦![CDATA]>🇮![CDATA]>🇳 @dalaucrew @autostyle.co.za ♬ original sound - iCandy07
The couple said they signed a contract and had to pay a R10,000 vendor fee.
“We have lost the most. We want answers; in fact, we demand answers. The entire car community needs answers. All of the vendors, we demand our money back and for this to never happen again,” Chetty said.
According to ECR, she is not scheduled to be on air until next Monday.
"As stated in her release, East Coast Radio was not involved or part of her event,” the radio station said in response to a query put forward by IOL.
“In the meantime, we are aware that she is working with her clients who wanted to participate in her event and she is doing that independently of ECR, as she is the sole owner of the event.”
IOL did contact Parasuramen for comment, but calls went straight to voicemail each time.