Home National SIU Applauds Arrests in Eastern Cape TERS Fraud Case

SIU Applauds Arrests in Eastern Cape TERS Fraud Case

by Central News Reporter
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SIU

SIU

The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has applauded the arrest of four individuals implicated in the fraudulent activities targeting the Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme (TERS) in the Eastern Cape. This arrest is a culmination of a rigorous investigation led by the Hawks, underscoring the government’s steadfast commitment to eliminating corruption, especially schemes designed to provide relief during the global COVID-19 pandemic.

The TERS, devised by the government and administered by the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF), was a lifeline for employers and employees facing financial distress due to the pandemic. However, it became a target for unscrupulous activities, as unveiled by the SIU probe.

Among the accused are Nomvuzo Melody Kupiso, Tlotliso Molaba, Lehlohonolo Class Motaung, and Lelokonyana Isak Letseng, who allegedly exploited the TERS benefits unlawfully, claiming funds they were not entitled to.

Kupiso, leveraging her enterprise, Khayathi, is accused of filing TERS benefit claims for individuals no longer part of her employment. The SIU’s investigation revealed that Kupiso engaged in misrepresentation and fraudulent acts to siphon off UIF funds. Remarkably, these alleged fraudulent activities led to a transfer of R216 905.95 to Khayathi, under the guise of disbursing benefits to nonexistent employees.

The matter took a legal turn when the SIU referred the findings to the prosecuting authorities, leading to Kupiso’s arrest on 18 April 2024. Following her court appearance at the King Williams Magistrates Court, Eastern Cape, Kupiso was released on a R1 500 bail, facing charges of fraud, forgery, and uttering.

Similarly, Molaba, Motaung, and Letseng, through their companies Afrikhan Source (Pty) Ltd and Izuz Gibbor (Pty) Ltd, are alleged to have submitted fraudulent TERS claims for non-existent employees. These actions resulted in the UIF disbursing substantial sums to the companies, with Afrikhan Source receiving approximately R1 396,053.40 and Izuz Gibbor securing around R101 555.92.

Upon referral of these findings by the SIU, the accused were arrested in Bloemfontein and Phuthaditjhaba, Free State, on 25 April 2024. Each was granted a R10 000 bail, with the case adjourned to 11 June 2024.

These arrests mark a critical milestone in South Africa’s fight against corruption and fraud, particularly within schemes established to assist the nation during unprecedented times. The SIU’s relentless pursuit of integrity and accountability sets a commendable precedent, ensuring that relief funds reach those genuinely in need and not exploited by fraudulent means.

Hawks Bellville Traffic Officer Detained for Alleged R15,000 Bribe
Hawks Bellville Traffic Officer Detained for Alleged R15,000 Bribe

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