- A Northern Cape woman who used a fake matric certificate to secure a job has been fined R60 000.
- Patricia Staffa, who worked for the Siyathemba Local Municipality, was found guilty of fraud and forgery.
- Staffa is expected to make monthly payments of R2 500 to pay off the fine.
A Northern Cape woman who submitted a fake matric certificate to land a job as a licence testing officer at the Siyathemba Local Municipality has been fined R60 000.
This was after the Specialised Commercial Crimes Court in Kimberley found Patricia Staffa guilty of fraud and forgery.
Staffa, who is no longer employed at the municipality, was sentenced to a fine of R60 000, or three years' imprisonment.
She was sentenced to a further two years' imprisonment, which was wholly suspended for five years, on the condition that she is not convicted of fraud, forgery, and theft.
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Staffa has elected to pay the fine and is expected to pay R2 500 on or before the 7th of each month, starting on 7 December 2022, until the fine is settled.
National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Mojalefa Senokoatsane said Staffa applied for a post at the municipality in September 2016.
He said Staffa misrepresented herself when submitting her CV and claimed during the interview that she had a matric certificate, which was one of the requirements of the post.
The municipality later appointed Staffa, and she then registered for training at the Gene Louw Traffic College to become a qualified licence testing officer.
"As part of the enrolment process at the college, the accused was expected to submit a copy of her matric certificate.
"The accused became reluctant when she was told to submit a copy of her qualification... The accused forged or manufactured a matric certificate and later presented the fictitious certificate to the head of Gene Louw College. This submission led to an investigation into the authenticity of the accused's matric certificate," said Senokoatsane.
During the trial, numerous witnesses – including officials from Umalusi, the Council for Quality Assurance in General and Further Education and Training, the Department of Education, and employees of the municipality – were called to testify by the prosecution.
Staffa elected not to testify or call witnesses during her trial, said Senokoatsane.