HomeLocal NewsQuartet denies fraud charges

Quartet denies fraud charges

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LUPANE — The trial of a Matabeleland North Sports and Recreation Commission (SRC) official and three Kusile Rural District Council (RDC) employees who allegedly defrauded the local authority of about $2 000 opened on Monday, with the four denying the charges.

The four are Permanent Sibanda (SRC sports coordinator), Mandla Moyo (Kusile RDC revenue clerk), former council employee Mpendulo Manga and Jabulani Sibanda (council book keeper).

Lupane magistrate Takudzwa Gwazemba remanded the case to May 22 for continuation of trial.

The case had been pending since last July and the four are out of custody on free bail.

Kusile RDC chief executive officer Mhlaseli Mpofu told the court the alleged fraud was discovered when the local authority, which is renting out some of its buildings to the SRC, demanded payment of the outstanding rental fees.

He said a clerk at the SRC offices claimed to have paid up, but further investigations revealed the money had allegedly been diverted.

The State alleges sometime between June 2010 and July 2011, Sibanda and Moyo allegedly connived to defraud their employers of $1 920 which had been paid as rental fees.

To expedite the alleged fraud, Moyo gave Sibanda 10 blank council receipts and instructed him to fill in purporting that he had paid rentals to council for the period in question.

Sibanda would allegedly go to the bank and withdraw the cash from the SRC’s account on the pretext it was for rentals but would allegedly convert the money to his own use.

The alleged fraud was discovered by some council officials who visited the SRC offices to ask them why they were not paying rentals.

An SRC official who was at the offices produced the alleged fraudulent receipts. This led to the arrest of Sibanda and Moyo.

When the matter first went to court in July, Sibanda and Moyo implicated Manga, a former council employee, and Jabulani Sibanda, a bookkeeper with the RDC, in the scam.

This led to the arrest of Jabulani and Manga.
The four are jointly charged with fraud.

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