Special Tribunal hears of alleged R4.5m Gauteng health department fraud

Ernest Mabuza Journalist
The Special Tribunal on Monday heard a case brought by the SIU where it seeks to recover R4.5m from a company and three people who allegedly defrauded the health department. Stock photo.
The Special Tribunal on Monday heard a case brought by the SIU where it seeks to recover R4.5m from a company and three people who allegedly defrauded the health department. Stock photo.
Image: OLIVIER LE MOAL/123RF

The R4.5m fraud trial of a former Johannesburg-based state attorney official and her sister got under way at the Special Tribunal on Monday.

The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) seeks to recover this amount from Nosipho Zibani and three others.

Zibani, a qualified attorney who was employed in the department of justice and correctional services, is on trial with her sister Phindile Zibani after they allegedly teamed up to defraud the department of health in Gauteng of R4.5m between 2016 and 2017.

Nosipho is accused of creating fictitious and bogus medico-legal claims and invoicing department personnel at various hospitals in Gauteng.

The Special Tribunal heard that she was at all material times responsible for handling litigation on behalf of the department of health in relation to the actions of delictual acts of medical personnel at various hospitals in Gauteng.

David Mtsweni, counsel for the SIU, told Special Tribunal judge Lebogang Modiba that Nosipho would issue invoices to herself using a letterhead, purportedly belonging to Yolanda Tebogo Hlatshwayo, for services rendered in the form of a medico-legal report and cause invoices to be paid into Hlatshwayo's bank accounts.

Hlatshwayo is a nurse by profession.

Upon receipt of the payment into her bank account, it is alleged Hlatshwayo would pay funds into the account of Phindile Zibani, the Special Tribunal heard. The money would eventually find its way to Nosipho. 

The funds would be channelled through Phindile's accounts and another company, Ntandokazi Trading.

The lawyer said the four respondents knew that the alleged services had not been rendered by Hlatshwayo and that the payments constituted defrauding the department of health in Gauteng.

Modiba said the conduct of Nosipho Zibani needs to be referred to the Legal Practice Council and to the Hawks.

Modiba stood the matter down until Thursday to afford witnesses the opportunity to testify before the Special Tribunal.

TimesLIVE


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