Black Sash Media Statements

"Know your credit status, Know your rights!” - Black Sash launches Consumer Protection Campaign over Festive Season - 26 November 2009

For Immediate Release: Thursday, 26 November 2009

The Black Sash urges all consumers to check their credit status before blowing their bonuses or splurging on goods they don’t urgently need this festive season. We have set up a help line (072-66 33 739) to assist those who would like to get hold of a free copy of their credit report. Our regional offices will also be assisting local communities in this regard in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

Black Sash Advocacy Programme Manager, Nkosikhulule Nyembezi, says everyone is legally entitled to one free copy of their credit record each year. “The first step towards effectively managing your finances and taking control of your household budget during this recession is to have an accurate picture of what you owe and to whom. It is crucial that you regularly check credit bureau information as it is used by banks, shops and other credit providers to decide if you can afford to borrow more money. Many people have found themselves mistakenly blacklisted because of inaccurate or incomplete information and poor data collection.”

Nyembezi insists consumers must challenge and correct credit information they believe is inaccurate. “A credit bureau can only keep information about bad debts for a specified period of time. Incorrect or old information that should have been cleared off your report can seriously affect your future employment opportunities and your ability to loan more money or make other purchases. All credit providers must also let you know if they intend reporting negative information on you to a credit bureau. They must call you at least 20 working days before they report you so that you have a reasonable chance to correct the situation.”

ENDS.

Read the Black Sash 'You and Your Rights' information sheet on Credit Providers

Read the Black Sash 'You and Your Rights' information sheet on Credit Bureaux 

Find out more about Credit Bureau Regulations and Your Rights

For interview requests, please contact:  

Nkosikhulule Nyembezi

Black Sash Advocacy Programme Manager

Cell: 082 429 4719

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  

OR  

Xolela May

Black Sash Paralegal

Cell: 084 357 5981

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.