Mom owed R500k in VBS saga devastated

Clients visit a branch of VBS Mutual Bank in Thohoyandou, Limpopo.
Clients visit a branch of VBS Mutual Bank in Thohoyandou, Limpopo.
Image: ANTONIO MUCHAVE

A Limpopo mother who invested R600 000 in the collapsed VBS Mutual Bank has only received R100 000 of her savings and is so traumatised by the thought of losing the remaining R500 000 that she is suffering memory loss and depression.

Tshinyalani Elisa Mudau's children now fear she may even lose her life due to her constant worrying about her investment.

When she started banking with the bank in 1993, Mudau's desire was to save enough money so all her children would not have to apply for bursaries at tertiary level. She managed to save a whopping R600 000.

Mudau, 59, from Tshiulungoma village outside Thohoyandou, said she heard news of the bank's liquidation on radio last week while at work at the Thulamela municipality. She was so devastated she immediately went home.

"When I arrived home, I just went to my bedroom and slept. Truly speaking, it has now become so hard for me to concentrate at work.

"Sometimes I just find myself making a U-turn home while driving to work because I tend to lose sense of reality due to my constant thinking about this," Mudau said.

The SA Reserve Bank (SARB) had appointed Nedbank to pay up to R100 000 to all of the bank's retail depositors. That was all Mudau has received so far.

However, she is worried about the remainder of her investment.

"Losing my money with the bank has really affected my health. My life is no longer the same. I have since been admitted to hospital twice and always go for regular check-up at the local clinic because my blood pressure becomes high now and again," said the mother of five.

Last week, the SARB's application to the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria to have the looted bank dissolved was approved.

The SARB's report into VBS, titled The Great Bank Heist, revealed how close to R2bn was stolen from the bank over a period of three years by 53 individuals, including bank executives and politicians.

Mudau's son, Dennis Baloyi said: "With my mother having been not well because of this VBS saga, it has also affected us emotionally as the children.

"We always used to be a happy family. She has been the family's pillar of strength and supported us in all ways she could from an early age.

"I fear that she might lose her life from constant worry over her money," said Dennis.

Mudau wants all those who are implicated in the scandal to pay back the money.

- Mukurukuru Media

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