Honest car guard returns R15 000 to owner

Mlondi Radebe, The Witness

Pietermaritzburg - An Edendale Mall car guard has been hailed for his honesty after turning in a bag containing more than R15 000.

David Kalonga found the bag in a shopping trolley and handed it to security guards.

It was found to contain a cellphone, identity document, driver’s licence, some documents and R15 400 cash.

Right thing

Kalonga told The Witness that returning the money to the owner was the right thing.

“I am a Christian and I know that taking something that doesn’t belong to you is a sin. That is why I made sure that he gets his bag.

“At the time I did not know what was in the bag; I just thought about the owner and that he or she was in a state of panic. I don’t want to see anyone suffering,” said Kalonga.

It was a Friday, one of the busy days of the month when he noticed the bag in the trolley in the parking lot at the mall, with no one next to it.

Ntombenhle Mtolo, spokesperson for Bhekani Abantu Security, which provides guarding services at the mall, said they checked the last dialled number on the cellphone, which turned out to be the owner’s brother, who said he was with the owner, Jacob Miya, at the time.

“This made it easy for us. He returned to the mall and it was easy to identify him as both his ID and licence were in the bag,” said Mtolo.

'I was so happy'

Miya, of Kokstad, was in town for a visit when he stopped at the mall. “After shopping, I packed everything in the boot of my car without noticing that the bag was left behind in the trolley. I reversed my car, paid the car guard R3 and went home,” said Miya.

“My brother received a call while I was off-loading. He handed the phone to me. I was asked to go back to the mall, but I did not know why they wanted me. As I was about to leave the house I realised that my bag was not in the house or car. I rushed to the mall, hoping that they had it.

“I was so happy to see my bag with them, although I was panicking, not knowing if the money was still there. I was relieved when they showed me the money and everything that was in it. I gave them R400 to share,” said Miya.

“I couldn’t believe we still have people who can return your lost things, including money, while they are working in an environment where they rely on tips from the shoppers,” he said.