Police seek source of fake certificates

MPUMALANGA police's organised crime unit says it will not rest until it establishes the origin of fake matric certificates.

The certificates were used by three people to enrol for an auxiliary nursing course at Tonga Hospital.

The "fake nurses", who were arrested on Monday, yesterday briefly appeared in the Tonga magistrate's court where they were not asked to plead to charges of fraud.

Samuel Jabulani Nkomo, 39, Luzile Beatrice Mazibuko, 34, and Sibongile Ntombikayise Ngomane, 42, were each granted R1500 bail pending their next court appearance on July 15.

Captain Leonard Hlathi said the police had established that the three became auxiliary nurses at the hospital submitting the fraudulent certificates in August last year. They were undergoing an internal training programme to become more qualified when they were nabbed.

Meanwhile, Sowetan has established that the three accused used to work at the hospital as cleaners before a member of the management promised them that they could be enrolled as auxiliary nurses if they produced matric certificates.

They confirmed to the police that the certificates were not genuine. Umalusi, an institution that deals with the regulation of matric results and certificates, also confirmed to the police that the certificates were indeed fake.

"Now we want to know who is selling the certificates, and to what extent have they been sold.

"This could lead to further arrests because other people might also be in possession of these certificates," Hlathi said yesterday.

Meanwhile, health department spokesperson Mpho Gabashane said investigations into how the three nurses were appointed were continuing.