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Six Arrested In R3m Education Department Fraud Scandal

Six people who allegedly funneled more than R3 million from the education department to fraudulent beneficiaries have been arrested in Mpumalanga on fraud, corruption, and money laundering charges.

Nomthandazo Delsie Khoza, 41, Error Mosibudi Makutu, 45, Patrick Ngobeni, 40, Themba Confidence Khoza, 42, Musa Brandon Mathebula,  43, and Portia Khoza, 44, face 117 charges, according to Hawks spokesperson Captain Dineo Lucy Sekgotodi.

Between May 2019 and November 2020, Nomthandazo was employed as an accounting clerk at the Department of Education in Bushbuckridge and was responsible for “payments of ex-employees and deceased beneficiaries”, Sekgotodi said.

“She allegedly colluded with Makutu, who is employed as an accounting clerk at the same department, and created fraudulent beneficiaries of late employees, [before channeling] payments thereof to themselves and their relatives’ personal bank accounts, causing an actual loss to the amount of R 3 010 475.44 to the department,” Sekgotodi added.

READ | Three suspects to appear in court in R299 million tax evasion and fraud case

The six people were arrested on Monday and four vehicles were seized for further investigation.

They appeared in the Bushbuckridge Magistrate’s Court on the same day.

Bail for Nomthandazo was set at R15 000, and bail amounts for the other accused varied from R5 000 to R3 000.

The case was postponed to 24 March 2022 for further investigation.

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