More arrests expected in alleged R1.2 million fraud case against IEC’s Nomsa Masuku

More arrests expected in alleged R1.2 million fraud case against IEC’s Nomsa Masuku

The Hawks are continuing their investigation into an alleged R1.2m fraud case against Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) commissioner Dr Nomsa Masuku initially flagged by Standard Bank and reported to police 10 years ago.

Masuku, 62, was arrested on Friday and appeared in the Johannesburg specialized commercial crimes court on charges of theft, fraud, and money laundering involving R1.2m. She was granted bail of R20,000.

The charges emanate from her tenure as Standard Bank’s head of corporate social investment.

According to the bank’s records, Masuku was the head of the unit in 2008 and the bank raised concerns about fraud to police in 2014.

Hawks spokesperson Col Katlego Mogale said Masuku allegedly committed fraud while managing the bank’s Adopt A School Trust set up to provide scholarships and bursaries to pupils.

“[She allegedly] flaunted the processes of the trust by awarding scholarships to friends and family members through manipulation of documents and without the approval of the committee, with some of the monies deposited directly into her personal bank account to the tune of R1.2m,” Mogale said.

Mogale told the publication police were looking into other suspects who might have collaborated with Masuku.

“We are not ruling out the possibility of having other suspects arrested. We are not saying she was alone, we are in that process of finding out with whom. The investigations are ongoing,” she said.

National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) spokesperson Phindi Mjonondwane said Masuku allegedly transferred a sum of R800,000 to a second person implicated in the case.

“Furthermore, the state alleges that she illicitly awarded bursaries worth R400,000 to ineligible recipients, including family members and friends. The matter has been adjourned to [give] the state sufficient time to apprehend the outstanding suspect,” Mjonondwane said.

Masuku is out on bail and will return to court on September 4.

The IEC said it would monitor developments in the matter.

“The commission is aware of the reported arrest of commissioner Masuku. It appears that the matter relates to her erstwhile employment and does not relate to her tenure in the commission both as an employee and commissioner. The commission will monitor developments in the matter,” the commission’s statement read.

According to her profile on the IEC website, Masuku started her career in election management in 1998 but took a seven-year hiatus from the commission when she worked for Standard Bank before returning to its management.


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