Two in court for R6m school feeding scheme fraud

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File: The NSNP tender and its finalisation in July 2017 created a massive crisis in schools across the province, with children going without food for weeks.

File: The NSNP tender and its finalisation in July 2017 created a massive crisis in schools across the province, with children going without food for weeks.

NELSPRUIT – Two people are in hot water after allegedly defrauding the Mpumalanga Department of Education of an estimated R6-million.

Nkosinathi Mbombi (45) and Elizabeth Zitha (60) appeared in the Nelspruit Regional Court on Thursday over their alleged involvement in a bogus school feeding scheme. 

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The Hawks said that in 2011 the accused allegedly submitted several fraudulent invoices to the Department of Education for services never rendered.

"The matter was referred to the Hawks’ Serious Commercial Investigation Unit for investigations leading to the pair being served with the summons on 22 March 2018 to appear in court.

"Mbombi who is an employee of the Department of Health was allegedly instrumental in recruiting owners of various companies to submit these invoices. The money was allegedly deposited into the said businesses accounts, as well as individual accounts and was subsequently withdrawn and shared amongst the syndicate," the Hawks said in a statement.

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The accused were released on a warning with strict conditions and will be back in court on June 4.