Department of labour official in hot water over corruption

On April 14, 2023, the 49-year-old department of labour employee appeared before the Gqeberha Magistrate’s Court on 27 corruption-related allegations. The suspect was apprehended by Gqeberha Serious Corruption Investigation on April 13, 2023, as part of a coordinated intelligence-driven operation with Gqeberha Serious Commercial Crime Investigation of the Hawks and Gqeberha Crime Intelligence Gathering.

The complainant allegedly engaged with an alleged sex worker in Gqeberha in February 2022. After the incident in February 2022, the complainant started receiving calls from someone posing as a detective from Durban who was looking into his case of fraud and rape. She claimed that her investigation could ruin his life because he would spend the rest of his life in prison because she had issued an arrest warrant for him. Additionally, it is alleged that R390500 was successfully extorted from the victim and deposited into the suspect’s bank account.

The matter was handed over to the Hawks for an in-depth investigation, according to the provincial Hawks spokesperson Captain Yolisa Mgolodela.

“During the interaction with the investigating officer, the suspect who has been proved to be a state accountant from the department of labour in Pretoria is reported to have offered to pay an amount of R50 000 to have the docket destroyed of which the investigating officer pretended to play along. The agreement was on an initial payment of R30 000 which the suspect allegedly agreed to fly to Gqeberha to pay. The remaining R20 000 balance was to be paid at a later stage.

“The exchange of money (R30 000) was witnessed by members of the joint operation and the suspect was apprehended by the joint team in Gqeberha airport on 13 April 2023,” said Mgolodela.

The 49-year-old suspect made her first court appearance at Gqeberha Magistrate’s Court to have her case heard. The joint team received praise for their excellent work from acting Provincial Head Brigadier Venessa Hastings.