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Thursday, July 7, 2022

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Beware criminals posing as Stats SA fieldworkers during Census 2022

Deputy Minister in Presidency Ms Thembi Siweya conducting a census 2022 state of readyness at Gauteng Provincial Blitz launch in Diepsloot, North of Johannesburg. Photo Jairus Mmutle/GCIS

Deputy Minister in Presidency Ms Thembi Siweya conducting a census 2022 state of readyness at Gauteng Provincial Blitz launch in Diepsloot, North of Johannesburg. Photo Jairus Mmutle/GCIS

Published Feb 7, 2022

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Cape Town - Residents and activists fear that Census 2022 might open opportunities for criminals who will come to their houses and rob them.

Residents say telephone scammers will use technology to make them believe they are actually calling from Statistics SA.

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Stats SA began counting the transient population at various sites last week as part of nationwide census activities marking the official start of the Census 2022 count.

Fransina Lukas, the provincial community policing forum board chairperson, said people must be vigilant at all times because criminals will always look for an opportunity to do crime.

“Before community members allow anyone into their homes to count them, proof of identification must be obtained,” said Lukas.

Luqmaan Omar, head of the project management office in the Census 2022, urged citizens to use the online fieldworker verification system.

Omar said their employees wear branded bibs, have Stats SA ID cards, and have a letter introducing themselves and the survey.

“Fieldworkers have a census-branded ID card printed with the Stats SA logo with their photo, name, unique number and the district they have been assigned to work in,” he said.

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Households can also use of the online Fieldworker Verification System, he said. Households can search by name, surname or verification number.

He said the fieldworker’s photo, full name and surname and the district they have been assigned to work in will be displayed.

Fidelity ADT spokesperson Charnel Hattingh said one of the most common ways criminals use to gain entry to properties is to pose as municipal or other service providers.

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A criminologist at Stellenbosch University’s political science department, Guy Lamb, warned that there may be some individuals who will pretend to be – and dress up similar to – census employees and then try their luck with robbing people.

Households can contact the call centre on 0800 110 248, or the provincial census contact person to verify the legitimacy of the person knocking at their door.

[email protected]

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