Identity theft plunges man into nightmare
Johannesburg - A man whose identity was stolen has faced a bureaucratic banking nightmare trying to fix the fallout from the fraud.
Dumisani Gumede was informed in 2008 that his identity had been stolen and personal loans had been taken out at Nedbank using his ID number.
After an investigation, Nedbank cleared him of the fraud. He received a letter to that effect and was told his name would be cleared.
A few months later Gumede found out the property he was renting in Fishers Hill, Ekurhuleni, had been repossessed by Absa bank and was up for auction.
He wanted to bid for the property and applied for a loan, only to discover he had been blacklisted by Nedbank because of the identity theft.
Gumede has spent years trying to fix the error and get a home loan approved, without success.
After numerous meetings with Nedbank his credit profile was cleared of the judgment against him.
But as a result of the process he no longer has a credit profile, making it impossible for him to get a loan from any bank.
Gumede said he was told at a meeting with Nedbank that he should hire a lawyer to try to sort out the issue.
Meanwhile, two auctions for the property he was living in were put on hold to allow him to get a loan.
Through his lawyers, he had documented numerous meetings with Nedbank. He had even had a complaint sent to the banking ombudsman. Despite this, Gumede has still not been able to sort out the mess.
Now, the house has been sold because the sheriff would no longer wait.
Gumede said he was told by one banking consultant at Nedbank that his ID number was put into their computer system as a fraudulent one and there was no way to clear this.
“They told me that when they type the ID number into their computers, it is immediately rejected,” Gumede said.
He said this meant it was impossible for him to be granted a loan at the bank and when he applied to other banks, he was rejected because of his blank credit history.
“Every time I go to Nedbank and try to re-apply for a loan, they keep on telling me to fill in new application forms and give them banking statements,” Gumede said.
“I am promised this will be fixed and then everything goes silent and I have to go through the whole process again.”
Gumede said he had been referred to numerous consultants over the years and everyone promised him they would sort out the situation, without results.
“There have been so many broken promises... I have spent R100 000 on lawyers trying to sort this out.”
He said he didn’t know where he would live once the property in Fishers Hill was transferred to the new owner.
Nedbank spokesperson Thembi Malabi confirmed that Gumede had applied for a home loan and the property was sold to a third party because he could not secure one.
Malabi said the bank had provided Gumede with a letter saying he had an adverse listing because of identity theft and he should produce this correspondence when applying for a loan with other banks.
“Regrettably, the bank is not in a position to lend to Mr Gumede at this stage due to his credit profile,” Malabi said. - The Star