SAFPS logo

I would like to draw your attention to an organisation named the South African Fraud Prevention Services, hereafter referred to as SAFPS.


Basically this is a private organisation that draws membership from, primarily banks and other affiliate institutions and organisations, who have voluntarily joined the organisation. It is presented, that its objective is to curb fraud by making a register of all suspected fraudsters and floating this list amongst members to ward them off from doing business of any kind with these “suspects”. This all sounds very noble in a country riled with crime such as ours.


Basically, the mode of operation is that if any member suspects fraudulent intent by a person that they are dealing with, they then send the name of the suspect to SAFPS who then list the person. Any of their members intending to enter into a transaction with anyone, first consult the list to see if one has been listed before they go ahead. If one is listed, they may not be allowed to do business with any of the members. A suspect stays on this list for 10 years.


The operations of SAFPS are directed through a board of directors, drawn from member organisations.


When SAFPS started operating a few years ago, they were initially halted by the courts through an application from the office National Credit Regulator, which sought to have them register as a credit bureau which was affirmed by the courts. They had problems trying to register though because some of their intentions seemed to violate the constitution. They were eventually registered under very clandestine circumstances (brown bags could have been in use).


What now becomes questionable are the effects of SAFPS’s operations which makes it look like an organisation that is intended to exclude poor people from participating in the economic activities of this country. The “crimes” that get people listed range from as petty as someone claiming they have a job, when they are actually informal, to serious ones of identity theft. The sentence though, is the same, 10 years of economic inactivity.


SAFPS have membership across a spectrum of companies. Notable are employment agencies, so people are now prevented from employment by these agencies because of being suspected of fraud, and one is out for 10 years.


I would really like assistance to check whether the operations of this organisation are legal in our country. It is puzzling that we can have a “private” institution that can pass a sentence on someone’s inclusion in economic activity, without a conviction from the courts. We have courts that are effective in this country and one wonders the motive of creating this kangaroo gathering.



It is not rocket science to realise that poor people are the ones that are always fighting to get financial services and sometimes in doing so they violate some of the banking rules and hence they are more prone to be listed by SAFPS and given a hefty sentence. Black people are poor. What is the dermatological composition of the people listed by this organisation, one wonders.


When one looks at the composition of directors of SAFPS, executive and otherwise, one is tempted to think that this is an organisation intended to frustrate black people and curb them from the mainstream economy. In fact there is a tendency by white society to form groupings of companies that support and recommend each other for business and try to exclude blacks as much as possible. It is unacceptable for large banks to fall into this low practice and one would like to challenge them if they have listed known liars like “Ubaba ka Dudu”.


You have taken this baton to carry on the noble work of fighting for us black people.  It is when you win the seemingly small battles, that we continue to win as EFF, that the war will be slowly turned in our favour.