City warns of scam artist fleecing residents
The City of Cape Town would like to inform residents to be on the lookout for a scam artist posing as a City of Cape Town employee.
The City has received at least three reports from Milnerton, Claremont and Rondebosch of residents being fleeced of thousands of rands by a person claiming to represent the City as part of an electricity and/or water meter upgrade project. The person further indicates that pensioners are being prioritised for the upgrades and makes them part with significant amounts of cash on the premise that his colleagues will arrive the following day to complete the work.
The City can assure the public that the modus operandi described does not conform with our processes. Our field staff do not handle cash – all such transactions are done at the City’s customer centres or via the appropriate electronic channels.
While the City is currently rolling out an electricity meter replacement programme, the planned replacements are free. Each replacement has a notification number on our internal systems which the City call centre can verify should a resident enquire. In addition, we do targeted marketing and mailbox drops of any planned work to be carried out in an area.
Customers will not be charged for water meter replacements initiated by the City either, unless they have formally applied for a change.
Any member of the public can verify whether visitors to their home are in fact employed by the City by:
- phoning the call centre on 0860 103 089 to confirm whether work is being carried out in their area
- informing the official that they will allow them entry only once the call centre has verified their identity
Residents can also ask for a letter of appointment outlining the purpose of the project on a City of Cape Town letterhead, signed by a City official with both office and cellular telephone numbers on the letterhead.
Residents should please inform the South African Police Service as well as the City in the event that they are approached by potential criminals.
Issued by: Media Office, City of Cape Town
Media enquiries: Priya Reddy, Spokesperson for the City of Cape Town, Tel: 021 400 4684 or Cell: 084 549 3935, E-mail: Priya.Reddy@capetown.gov.za