A student from the University of the Free State (UFS) who had allegedly been scamming other students by selling fake laptops and promising them accommodation was identified.
"Nkosinathi Mthembu", whose real name is Lehlogonolo Ditsebe, scammed Athenkosi Madikane, who paid him R1700 for a laptop.
Ditsebe had promised to send the laptop via Paxi, a delivery service from Pep. However, he only sent a R40 pillow bought from the same shop.
Madikane, 20, a second-year student in Bcom financial accounting at North West University, said he had sacrificed his food allowance from the National Student Financial Aid Scheme to buy the laptop. He added:
Madikane said the second option was to pay the whole amount when he got a confirmation SMS that he had sent the parcel.
“I chose the latter as I did not want to end up using the money. The parcel was supposed to arrive on March 10 and all along we had been in contact. However, on the day of the arrival of the parcel, he started to ignore my messages. I asked him to send me the PIN so that I could get the parcel,” he said.
He ended up calling Paxi and giving them the tracking number and they gave him the pin.
READ:Consumer Ombud gets R7.7 million back for customers
“I was very excited as I made my way to Pep in town in Vereeniging. He had told me that he included a pillow to protect the laptop. At the store, the cashier was carrying the parcel as if it was light. I got the parcel and indeed I felt the pillow but there was no laptop. I was shattered and I remember just walking around the mall not knowing what to do or where to go,” he recalled.
He went back to Pep and told them what happened and requested the sender’s details, but they said he should call Paxi offices:
He added Twitter detectives helped unmask the scammer, as one of the tweeps managed to get his details from Paxi. That’s how he knew he was a student at UFS.
Madikane said he immediately sent his scammer his correct details and now the tables had turned, as it was Ditsebe who was sending him messages non-stop.
“He was begging me to delete the post and he even managed to pay me R900, saying he would pay the rest when he gets his allowance on the 25th. I told him the post would only be deleted when he paid all my money,” he said.
A good Samaritan from Twitter gave Madikane R400 and he now has R1200 for the laptop.
When City Press tried to phone Ditsebe, his phone was off and he did not respond to messages sent to him. A media enquiry has also been sent to the university and will be added as soon as they respond.