TV licence rip-off

Cornelius Jakobus Victor, Rugby

I am a pensioner who lives on R1 600 per month.

In December 2016, my brother bought me a TV and I was to pay for the TV licence. The TV licence was due in December 2017.

As it was Christmas time, I did not have R270 to pay for it. January is also a difficult time so on February 20 this year, I put a down payment of R160. The cashier at the post office told me that there is an outstanding amount of R158 – interest for those two months is R48.

On March 22 (one month later), they told me the outstanding amount was now R255, 50. That is another R96 in interest. Don’t you think this is absolute absurd. So I have already paid R415, 50 in two months? Maybe that’s why people don’t pay their TV licences.

I get the same pension as a 70-year-old pensioner and I am 60. Why do they get a pensioner’s discount and I don’t? And for the record, I also won’t pay my TV licence again.

Lebohang Sekete, acting manager, media relations, SABC, responds: Penalties are statutory for non or late payment and must be levied as such. We automatically convert licences for people who are 70 years (as per legislation) and those receiving benefits from the SA Social Security Agency must apply for a reduced rate with supporting documentation, this is also a statutory requirement. Licence holders who cannot afford to pay the full licence fees, can pay monthly instalments or contact us to make arrangements.