Money that was supposed to have been used to pay out Vryheid’s Sassa beneficiaries this morning was stolen during a burglary at the post office on Tuesday night, reports Vryheid Herald.
Hundreds of the town’s most vulnerable residents started queuing at the post office before sunrise on Wednesday morning, and are now being turned away at the door.
Unofficial police sources have indicated that the burglary was only discovered on Wednesday morning, as the alarm did not go off.
The robbers broke in at the back entrance to the post office and made off with laptops, as well as Sassa cards.
Sassa beneficiaries are being advised by post office staff to withdraw their grants at the ATMs if they have already set up their pin.
Bongani Mtshali, who travelled from Nquthu to collect his grant, said he was unable to use the ATM, as he hadn’t been issued with the new Sassa card. He is using a Sassa slip and his ID. “We don’t know what we are going to do because we don’t have the money to go home,” he said.
Bongani is one of many who travel long distances to collect their grants using a Sassa slip and ID, who now find themselves stranded at the post office.
The Vryheid Herald has contacted South African Post Office spokesperson Nobuhle Njapha to find out how Sassa beneficiaries will be assisted, and the impact this crime will have on cardholders. Njapha has promised to release an official statement within the hour.