Top arrest in textbook scam

2009-07-02 00:00

THE former chief financial officer for the treasury and Education Department in KwaZulu-Natal, Pamela Bosman-Zulu, yesterday joined Indiza Infrastructure Solutions boss Jabulani Mabaso in the dock in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court in connection with charges of corruption, fraud and money laundering.

The chief investigator in the case, Alan Nixon, did not oppose the bail application for Bosman-Zulu and said he is satisfied that she is not a flight risk.

Bosman-Zulu is the ex-wife of  Pietermaritzburg’s former municipal manager, Thabane Zulu.

Magistrate Divesh Mootheram granted her bail of R30 000 on various conditions, including that she surrender her passport.

Bosman-Zulu’s advocate, Louis Barnard, declined to explore the merits of the case against her during the bail hearing, and said they would be dealt with at her trial.

In her testimony, she explained that she has two children, aged six and three years, and detailed her financial expenditure on their schooling and her living costs, including rental of R8 000 for a house in Johannesburg.

She said she is doing “consultancy work” in Johannesburg, KwaZulu-Natal and East London.

Her parental home is in Mdansane, East London.

Her pension, which is due from her job with the province, has not yet been paid out.

Mabaso, who is on bail of R1 million, faces charges that he committed fraud, corruption and money laundering against the KZN Education Department involving some R200 million.

The charges arise from a tender for the supply of books and stationery to schools in the province.

The state alleges that Mabaso defrauded the department over two years, from 2005 to 2007, by inflating pri­ces to the department, fabricating invoices and laundering money through the trust accounts of various attorneys. High-ranking officials of the department allegedly benefited from the fraud.

Both he and Bosman-Zulu are due to appear in court again on July 15.

The high court in Pietermaritzburg recently granted an interim order placing Mabaso’s luxury cars, properties and business entities under the control of a court-appointed curator pending the outcome of his criminal trial.

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