Alleged con artist uses Amajuba District mayors as scapegoats

MADADENI – Has the craving for success ever consumed you to a point where all you can think of is ways to make money? Gaining riches is often a tedious task, and can only be achieved by decades of determination and a life-time of hard work…but what if you took the easy way out and became an overnight success by snatching the wealth of others, and preying upon their vulnerabilities?

By gaining their trust, you’re able to hone the art of persuasion with intense passion, and the deception you create eventually becomes your truth.

There is an alleged con artist prowling around Newcastle, in search of wealthy individuals he can swindle for thousands of Rands.

A complaint was received from one of his recent victims residing in Madadeni Section 5, who would like to remain anonymous for fear of retribution. She said since December 2016, the fraudster has conned her out of R107 000 on three separate occasions, using Amajuba District Mayor, Dr Musa Ngubane, and Newcastle Mayor, Makhosini Nkosi as scapegoats.

She explained the alleged fraudster won the trust of his victims by flaunting his security company which provided services for Dr Ngubane, and when he approached his victims he would use that as collateral to earn trust.

The woman said she wasn’t the only person he conned, as another victim posted his story on social media.

“There were so many people who said they also fell for his tricks. He preyed mostly on wealthy women, and the fact that he is employed by the District Mayor made him seem like a trustworthy character.”

The victim said she was concerned he would continue with his deviousness and get away with it, without any consequences.

“He is a very intimidating guy, and I think many people are afraid to take legal action against him, but people must be aware that characters like these do exist, and we must not entertain and fund their deceitful lifestyles,” she emphasised.

His trickery spread as far as Johannesburg, where he claimed to own an event planning business, of which the actual owner said he promised them work in the Newcastle Municipality, if they made him a part of their company. He used Cllr Nkosi’s name to get equipment from the said company.

He found work for the company, but when it was time to pay, he told them the previous mayor of Newcastle finished all the town’s money and there was nothing left in the municipal budget to pay for the services rendered.

Deputy Director of Public Relations of Amajuba District Municipality, Sbonelo Cebekhulu said the actions of this alleged con artist were brought to the attention of Dr Ngubane.

They were aware of the damning insinuations which are being circulated on social media of an alleged fraudster who claimed to be working in collaboration with Dr Ngubane.

Dr Ngubane confirmed he knew the supposed fraudster, and that he was indeed linked to the security company appointed by the Amajuba District Municipality to provide VIP protection to the mayor.

“Dr Ngubane categorically distances himself from any criminal activities and acts of fraud which might have been committed by the said con artist, who in his doings has paraded as an associate of the Honourable Mayor,” said Mr Cebekhulu.

Dr Ngubane requested the relevant section within the municipality to provide his office with reasons why a person of questionable character would render such service to the office of the mayor, whereafter the mayor would decide which steps to take.

“We commend those who have come forward to alert the office of the mayor of the personality of the man entrusted with the responsibility of proving security to the mayor. All those concerned should report any criminal activities involving this man and his company,” said Mr Cebekhulu.

Cllr Nkosi confirmed he knew the alleged con artist. Although he knew him in his younger days, he denied to have any relationship with him.

“There is no connection between this man and the municipality. He is not working for us and there is very little we can do. However, should I be required to give information regarding my alleged involvement with him, I will gladly do so,” said Cllr Nkosi.

Cllr Nkosi said when he was still practising law, the alleged fraudster was once his client, but he didn’t know much of the man’s activities.

As far as being used as a scapegoat, Cllr Nkosi said these things happened from time to time when one was a public figure. “For as long as I know I am not involved; being implicated does not bother me, because people have already expressed he was using our names as mayors.” He said the con artist seemed to be a high flying socialite as it appeared on social media.

Police Marketing and Communication Liaison, Lizzy Arumugam said police received no charges against the alleged con artist.

The alleged con artist was contacted and he responded: “Are the any charges against my name? Because I will only comment when I face charges.”

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Payal Devisingh

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