Pensioner exploited?

2015-07-22 06:00
MAD: Setumile Mongale of Bochabela in Bloemfontein alleges that a white woman referred to him as a “bloody baboon” last Thursday. 
   Photo: 
Mlungisi Louw

MAD: Setumile Mongale of Bochabela in Bloemfontein alleges that a white woman referred to him as a “bloody baboon” last Thursday. Photo: Mlungisi Louw

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THE overcharging of a loan re-payment account, and subsequent enquiry about the excess charges, has lead to accusations of racism against an employee of a cash loans establishment in Bloemfontein.

The incident, where 58-year-old Setumile Mongale alleges he was called a baboon during a heated exchange when he went to ask about the additional charges, allegedly happened on Thursday morning (16/07) when the woman in question allegedly referred to the victim as a “bloody baboon”.

Mongale, who survives on a government disability grant, said the woman had been in the company of her two children at the time of the incident.

“The incident happened at a cash loans agency. I normally borrow money from them.

“I have been their client since February,” Mongale told Express.

“I was there to enquire about overcharges on my loan account. I expected to get a simple explanation from her, but I got more than I bargained for. Instead she called me a baboon,” said Mongale.

Following Express’s investigation into the matter, the cash loans establishment has since apologised to Mongale for the overcharging.

Mongale has also confirmed to Express that the overcharged amount has since been credited.

“I have been taking out a short-term loan of R400 from the same cash loan agency every month and they charge me interest of 30%.

“What I don’t understand is that their interest charges fluctuate.

“In March, they deducted R529,40 from my South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) account followed by another transaction of R545,92 the next month,” he explained.

“The cash loan agency deducted R598, R595 and R594 in May, June and July respectively.

Express is in possession of a copy of a statement that Mongale obtained from Sassa.

“That woman said they also charged me for swiping my card. When I asked her why the charges were not stable she said I would not understand because I’m a fu****g bloody baboon,” he said.

Mongale said when he asked the woman why she had called him a baboon, she said: “Yes, you are a baboon.”

“That’s when I realised that she was doing all this intentionally. As I walked out of their office I told her that I was going to report the matter to the police and to my lawyer.

“The new South Africa does not need people who still practise racism.

“We should learn to treat each other as equals.”

When Express put Mongale’s version of the events to the woman in question, whose name is known to Express, she denied calling him a baboon at first, and said it was simply not true that she had even insulted him, but later apologised.

“I never called him a baboon. How can I talk to someone like that in front of my kids?” she asked.

“I was not rude to that oupa (old man).

“That oupa was screaming and shouting at me. But I never said he was a baboon,” said the woman.

“I’m not a racist. I’m even dating a black guy.

“I asked the oupa politely to not scream at me because my children were around, but he kept on screaming at me. As he went out the door he said he was going to report the matter to his lawyer,” she added.

Asked about fluctuating deductions from Mongale’s Sassa account, the woman explained: “Oupa started borrowing R450 from us in April, hence we deducted high amounts in the last three months. Initially he took R400 per month.”

However, Mongale said he had never borrowed more than R400 from that cash loan agency.

“She always gives me two R200 bills when I get there,” he said.

Const. Wendy Nkabi has confirmed that a case of crimen injuria had been opened at the Park Road Police Station on Friday (17/07).

) Express undertakes to provide feedback on the story in upcoming editions

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