Client says she cannot afford to pay R200000

Johanna Mokae has accused Absa of repossessing her car though her account was in order.

Johanna Mokae has accused Absa of repossessing her car though her account was in order.

Mokae said her problems with the bank started after her account fell into arrears.

She said though she paid the R13000 she owed in arrears, the bank has repossessed her Jaguar and it has also threatened to sell the car if she does not settle the R200000 balance soon.

"When I explained to the legal department of the bank, they agreed to release the car on condition that I paid the money I owed in arrears. I told them I had paid, but still the car was not released," said Mokae.

"I feel betrayed. How can they now demand R200000 when I have paid the arrears?"

Absa spokesman Deon Oosthuizen said: "If Mokae does not settle the account soon, the bank will go ahead with the sale of the vehicle and will recover any shortfall from her."

But Mokae said she could not understand why Absa was selling her car when she was willing to pay the contract amount in monthly instalments.

"I am bitter. Only prejudiced people can act like Absa," said Mokae.

"It also saddens me that while the new National Credit Act (NCA) tries to restore dignity to consumers, Absa goes ahead and treats me so badly."

According to the NCA "once the borrower has agreed to pay, and pays the amount in arrears, the lender must reinstate him or her into the contract".

Mokae said: "If Absa was committed and was in supporting the NCA why did it not lead the way and comply with the act even before its implementation?"

"They advertised in Sowetan and told their clients that they are proud to support the NCA and are please to say they will continue, as always, to keep their clients best interest at heart. Just tell me how best have they treated me?"

Mokae said she was a valued client of Absa.

"But how do they expect me to raise R200000 at a go?"

But it does not look like Mokae will get legal reprieve because the Micro Finance Regulatory Council and the National Credit Regulator has no jurisdiction once a judgment is granted against a debtor.

Consumer Line requested Absa to reconsider its decision and the bank refused. Mokae has now lodged a complaint with the banking ombudsman.