Loan sharks and Sassa cards: Suspected loan sharks who use Sassa cards as collateral have been caught withdrawing cash at an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) at Thabong Mall in Sebokeng. The two suspects were caught by security guards who questioned the way they were behaving and the time they were taking at the ATM
How loan sharks use Sassa cards as collateral
The loan sharks lend to desperate poor people at exorbitant interest rates. They hold on to their Sassa card as collateral security. Some lend them at 30% interest rate per month.
According to the department’s Ofentse Morwane: “The two men were seen withdrawing cash using various Sassa cards at an ABSA machine near the Spar supermarket at the mall.”
The practise has been rife in South Africa following the covid-19 enforced lockdown with many poor South Africans turning to the services of loan sharks to get money to buy food.
South Africa has experienced long queues as many people are going to ATMs to access their money resulting in loan sharks capitalising and taking Sassa cards as collateral
Corruption in distribution of food parcels
The distribution of food parcels across the country has been characterised by corruption fron both the police and public officers. Other politicians have also been capitalising from the trust put in them to distribute food parcels.
South Africa is currently under a nation wide lockdown as part of the country’s response to the coronavirus pandemic. The number of coronavirus cases are currently at 8,232 and 161 deaths. 3,153 have recovered so far. The government faces pressure from opposition parties to lift the lockdown as they claim people are suffering more from starvation than covid-19. Opposition are calling for an increase in the payouts in Sassa cards.