- Mar 26, 2010
Unemployed and lured by the promise of quick growth on a small cash outlay, Bathabile Zondi is one of many South Africans who have fallen victim to mushrooming “WhatsApp stokvels”.
Zondi said she was recruited by friends in July, who had each received R1,200 after “joining” with only R200.
“At first I thought it wasn’t true, but when they showed me proof of money getting into their accounts, I decided to join,” she told TimesLIVE.
A hopeful Zondi said she borrowed R400 from her pensioner grandmother, promising to return it a week later, in line with what she was told by her recruiters.
“There is a WhatsApp group that has all the members, the administrator has a list of 11 people who must be given R200. After each is paid, we move on to the new one and the cycle continues ...” she explained.
Thuthukile Mbhele said she heard of the stokvel on Facebook, where a link to the WhatsApp group was provided. She joined. When a person joins, they are given contact details and an account number to deposit the money into.
A WhatsApp group called “Lifetime investment split”, seen by TimesLIVE, had 15 members. Each time a person joined, they would be welcomed and sent a message by the administrator.
Unemployed and lured by the promise of quick growth on a small cash outlay, Bathabile Zondi is one of many South Africans who have fallen victim to mushrooming 'WhatsApp stokvels'