JOHANNESBURG, June 6 South Africa's National
Credit Regulator (NCR) will appeal a tribunal ruling that
cleared Lewis Group of breaching credit rules with the
fees it charges customers, the NCR said on Tuesday.
The credit regulator last year referred Lewis to the
National Consumer Tribunal for allegedly contravening credit
rules when charging customers for warranties and club membership
fees that entitle them to special deals.
A majority of the tribunal found that there was a contract
for joining the club and a separate fee charged for club
membership for Lewis' credit customers. The furniture retailer,
which sells mostly to lower income groups on in-store credit,
was cleared of wrongdoing by the tribunal.
"The NCR does not support the credit retailers' conduct of
charging consumers a club fee on credit agreements or under any
supplementary agreements or documents. This fee increases the
consumers' cost of credit," the regulator told Reuters.
The regulator last week also referred clothing retailer Mr
Price to the tribunal for charging consumers a "club fee" on
Lewis shares were down 5.40 percent at 33.11 rand at 1213
(Reporting by Olwethu Boso; editing by David Clarke)