Ricochet News

Walter Sisulu University student briefly appears in court for R14 million theft

May 29, 2018
Walter Sisulu University student briefly appears in court for R14 million theft

The 28-year-old Walter Sisulu University student, who was last year accused of spending of millions of Rands belonging to the National Students Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS), briefly appeared before the East London Magistrate's Court for alleged theft.

It is alleged that during Jun 2017, the student mistakenly received just over R14.1 million from the NSFAS instead of about R1 400 for her stipend and allegedly spent just over R810 000 of this amount on personal items and parties before the error was uncovered.

Hawks spokesperson, Anelisa Feni, said Mani was arrested on Tuesday morning by the Serious Commercial Crime unit after she was requested to hand herself at the Hawks’ Eastern Cape Provincial office in East London.

She was released on a warning and she is expected to appear again in court on 2 July.

According to NSFAS last year, no public funds were lost in the unfortunate process that led to the R14.1 million error and the R818 000 that was subsequently misappropriated by the student.

It said that preliminary investigations by the service provider have established that these funds belonged to the university, and not NSFAS as initially believed.

It added that from preliminary assessments, NSFAS and the Walter Sisulu University confirmed that no employee on either part has been found to have been involved in the erroneous crediting of the R14.1 million into the student's IntelliCard account.

Furthermore, IntelliMali has opened a case of theft against the student and is cooperating with law enforcement authorities in their investigation.

Meanwhile a forensic investigation was launched into how Mani got paid such a large amount of money and how it took so long for the error to be discovered.