Woman who took Bulwer’s R7.5m arrested

2015-12-11 08:04


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Pietermaritzburg - The KZN government employee believed to be linked to the disappearance of R7.5 million from the provincial Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs (Cogta) has been arrested.

The money, which had been ring-fenced for a community centre in Bulwer, part of the Ingwe Municipality, went missing last month.

The woman is believed to have resigned with immediate effect on November 26 and vanished. Police said the woman had been arrested at the home of another suspect in the case, businessman Mex Dhladhla.

He had been arrested on December 3 and was released on R50 000 bail after appearing at the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court.

Police spokesperson Mthokozisi Ngobese said the second suspect was expected to appear at the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court soon.

The woman had worked as a junior official in the finance division and it is alleged that she had substituted the bank account on Ingwe Municipality’s claim form with a private bank account.

The R7.5 million was allegedly sent to the bank account of a business owned by Dhladhla, Imvusa Trading.

Sources in the department said an “unsuspecting” colleague authorised the payment on November 11.

Sources inside the department said the employee who had authorised the payment was suspended but later cleared after she explained herself during an internal investigation.

Cogta MEC Nomusa Dube-Ncube said law enforcement agencies were still investigating how this could happen and whether other parties were involved.

“The Hawks have demonstrated commendable efficiency in their investigation and today’s arrest of the alleged mastermind attests to this. The arrest also comes a day after the international anti-corruption day celebrated yesterday.

“In the wake of the multi-million rand theft, Cogta has further tightened the screws on its internal financial controls. We assure the public that we will draw the necessary conclusions from this incident. Our message of zero tolerance to potential thieves inside and outside the government is clear,” said Dube-Ncube.

Read more on:    pietermaritzburg  |  corruption

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