Dear Editor

Devastated by Rees
I invested R1.3m in Rees and Tannebaum’s scheme. I made one withdrawal of R200,000 and lost the rest (noseweek published my name, but the figures were incomplete.)

Here’s a question: I withdrew the R200,000 to pay provisional tax on an incentive bonus I received. Now I have lost the capital, can I claim the R200,000 back from SARS? What if I am asked to pay it back to the liquidators?

The background is this: I retired as a financial director some 18 months ago, and on the advice of someone connected to Rees, I invested my retirement savings (the R1.3m) in the scheme. I was told of the high profile investors, the involvement of Aspen, and of a positive audit. I got regular letters from Rees and watched excitedly as my investment grew (on paper). 

The public impression is that the investors in the scheme were wealthy and greedy. But some, like me, simply wanted financial independence in retirement.

I am 67 and my pension is too small to live on and I can only find temporary work. I am devastated that after a life of hard work I cannot now enjoy the fruits of my labour.

Ponzi Pensioner
By email

For the record
I’d like to correct some errors:

  • I have never had any association or business dealings with Dean Rees. (He did not serve articles with me.)
  • I was not struck off the roll of attorneys;
  • I was never denied bail, nor was I convicted of tax fraud (or theft or any type of fraud at all).

In a lighter vein, the speed mentioned in my Porsche was a little short off the mark.However, the magistrate was a scholar and a gentleman.
Nathan Cheiman
That’s about as bad as it gets around here. You sound like you could be a scholar and a gentleman. My fullsome apology – and dinner on the house – is yours. (Meanwhile someone I know is going to get his arse kicked.) – Ed.

Must try harder!
I really enjoy noseweek, but your last article on the Tannenbaum scam was tedious, inconclusive and failed to add anything new. You might as well have circulated the bank statements. I’m sure you can do better.

Robert Johnson
By email
You presumably had read the bank statements. Most readers want an intelligent summary, plus a bit more.Ed.

Roaming rip-off
Thanks for a superb magazine. On the subject of cell phone roaming charges (nose122) Vodacom sold me a Blackberry service on the understanding (I have it recorded) that my international roaming would be free. This was confirmed on three occasions.

After a recent trip to Japan, my data bill for Blackberry browsing and email came to R15,000. Am I the only unsuspecting and trusting client to be caught in this manner?

I reported the matter on 14 September last, and though it is now at CEO level, no resolution seems to be forthcoming.

I have enough proof to win a case against them – but whether I can afford litigating, against their budget, is still to be seen. Meanwhile, noseweek readers be warned.

Steven van Zyl
By email

Is this the Nedbank way?
Well done for getting resolution to Mrs Brinkhuis’s problem with Nedbank (nose121). If only Nedbank would show some empathy in my case.

I had two Nedbank credit cards, which went into arrears. I contacted Nedbank attorneys to make arrangements to pay a minimum of R500 until the first week of January when I would be able to settle the accounts. On 20 October I made the first payments, with the arrangement that further payments would follow each month. Yet, on 30 November Nedbank debited R16,000 from my savings account, without my consent.

They left me without anything to live on. I have pleaded with them to refund me a portion but the response from their René Pretorius has been a big NO.

Desiree Mojanaga
By email

Talk of victimisation
Calderisi’s “The trouble with Africa: Why foreign aid isn’t working” (nose121) treads the soil of anathema and sacrilege when he speaks of African fatalism, acceptance of corrupt leadership and shifting of responsibility. How dare he! Sounds like David Bullard – and look what happened to him.

Paul Theroux’s name was mud after he suggested the uselessness of foreign aid. Talk of victimisation is a cancer that no aid can heal. Surely we’re bone-weary of it by now?

TJ Ruthenberg
By email

Entertaining company
Regrettably, I won’t be renewing our subscription, as my hubby’s miserable Trans-
net railway pension can no longer cover expenses that aren’t strictly necessary. But I want to thank you for a very entertaining year in the company of your excellent magazine.  

Julie J van Rensburg
By email
All thanks to dear, dear Maria Ramos-Manuel.Ed.

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