South Africa: Sassa Pay Point Targeted By Robbers

The South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) has appealed to anyone who may have information about the robbery of SASSA's paypoint in Thafamasi, to contact their nearest police station.

The incident took place on Thursday morning at Ndwedwe, north of Durban, where at least five armed men moved into the pay site, while SASSA officials were busy with payments, and fired a number of shots.

According to the report, the robbers allegedly attacked a security guard and took his firearm before fleeing the scene with an undisclosed amount of cash that was already assigned to paymasters.

The gunmen used a South African Post Office hired double cab bakkie as a getaway vehicle. The car had officials' belongings, including cell phones and work equipment.

SASSA Regional Executive Manager in KwaZulu-Natal, Themba Matlou, said two officials suffered mild injuries as they ran for cover, while others were left traumatised.

Matlou said beneficiaries were not harmed during the incident and a case of theft and armed robbery has been opened at Ndwedwe Police Station.

While every effort is made to protect officials and beneficiaries during pay days, Matlou appealed to beneficiaries to also be vigilant and exercise caution when they are at the paypoints.

"We will ensure that security at these pay points is ramped up to ensure that our beneficiaries receive their grants in safe conditions. It's unfortunate that our clients had to experience this incident and that some officials were injured, this is a selfish act by these robbers who are placing the lives of the vulnerable groups under further financial strain," Matlou said.

Matlou has appealed to the law enforcement agencies to act swiftly to arrest the criminals.

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