Petrol attendant Sphamandla Wiseman Ndabezitha is planning to build his mother, Phumzile, a new brick and mortar home with money donated to him by generous South Africans.
The Sweetwaters resident, who works at the BP Garage in Hilton, shared a video showing him being conned by a motorist who drove off without paying his bill. Ndabezitha had asked the driver how much petrol he wanted and was told “two ten”, and he duly put R210 worth of fuel into the tank. But the driver only gave him two R10 notes.
The trick initially left Ndabezitha feeling helpless, but he decided to fight back by sharing a video recorded by the occupants of the conman’s car, on WhatsApp and his Facebook.
In the nine months since the incident, the video has been shared by thousands of people, eventually coming to the attention of activist lawyer Tumi Sole.
“He contacted me yesterday [Wednesday] morning after he saw the video on social media. He told me it was trending and that he wanted to help me,” he said.
Sole shared Ndabezitha’s story and his banking details with his Twitter followers and within hours the petrol attendant was stunned to see his bank balance rise from R100 to more than R11 000.
“I couldn’t believe it was true,” he said, “I am so thankful to everyone who has helped me.” He said the money would help him to build a safe home for his mother, who lives in a mud house.
He also wants to take some driving lessons and, if possible, hopes to start building a better home for himself and his sons, Efihle, Okuhle and Elihle.