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Interference at Postbank root of mass resignations

Postbank – A member of the SA Post Office Group. Picture: Postbank/Facebook

Postbank – A member of the SA Post Office Group. Picture: Postbank/Facebook

Published Sep 14, 2023


Johannesburg - A leaked letter to Minister of Communications Mondli Gungubele suggests that an oppressive and hostile attitude is at the centre of mass resignations that include Postbank chairperson Thabile Wonci.

This comes following Wonci and several board members staging a walkout of the ailing state entity after they tendered their resignations with immediate effect.

In a leaked letter dated September 12, Wonci and the board members cited the severity and recurring nature of the negative treatment and hostility they have suffered at the hands of Gungubele.

They say that in spite of dedicating their time and hard work to serving Postbank, they have been forced by recent circumstances to rethink their role within the institution.

“Our common goal has been to contribute to the growth, stability, and success of Postbank. However, recent events and unfortunate circumstances between the minister and the board have compelled us to make this difficult decision. There is absolutely no self-respecting board that can perform any meaningful work with the level of external interference, undue pressure, and influence that our board has endured over the past couple of months. This obviously disturbed us,” Wonci and others said.

The members said they have done all they could do in their power to serve the poor and vulnerable South Africans who depend on the bank for their financial needs, including pensioners, who this month have suffered after the bank experienced technical glitches to its payment system.

“Our commitment to the bank has always been driven by a deep sense of responsibility towards our beloved country and its people, our stakeholders, Postbank’s staff members, its esteemed clients, and grant beneficiaries, and it is with this same sense of responsibility that we tender our resignation.

“This decision to resign from the organisation for which we have worked so hard to ensure it delivers its mandate, particularly to the majority of the vulnerable South Africans, the grant beneficiaries, was not reached lightly. We understand and accept the implications of this decision,” said the board.

Attempts to get a comment from the minister were unsuccessful at the time of publication.

However, Gungubele and Social Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu were expected to address the media on Thursday afternoon following the recent interruption to grant payments, which has affected scores of pensioners.

The Star