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Public advised to safeguard their savings

To avoid disappointment this coming festive season, the SAPS warn the public to be extra careful when it comes to protecting their savings from robbers.

With the holidays fast approaching, the SAPS is warning the public to be on the lookout for thieves who will stop at nothing to obtain their victims’ savings.

The warning is issued especially for those carrying large amounts of cash and people belonging to a stokvel.

Regretfully, criminals frequently prey on their victims during the time the money is paid out or soon after.

The SAPS continues to caution the public against carrying significant amounts of cash. Instead, they suggest considering alternative methods, such as electronic transfer of the cash into individual bank accounts, as a way of distribution among stokvel members.

Having money electronically transferred into one’s bank account should help stop robberies similar to the ones previously recorded in connection with stokvels in the past.

According to Captain Manara Ramotshela of Alberton Police, 53 reports of stokvel robberies were made to the South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) between December 2014 and December 2017, with most of the occurrences (77%), taking place over the holiday season.

“It is possible that some of these robberies were skillfully planned by greedy individuals who joined the stokvels to work with criminals to steal from the members.

“Our goal is to educate the public about this issue and to encourage them to practise safety to protect their hard-earned money,” he said.

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