2008 murder lead to arrest of seven suspects for fraud, corruption and murder

PRETORIA � The execution of KwaZulu-Natal Social Development official Thembinkosi Dlamini, 37, who was shot dead in his office in 2008, has led to the arrest of seven (7) suspects for fraud, corruption and murder.

Dlamini was a branch manager at the Welfare office at Ngwelezane and was assigned to conduct an internal investigation within the department following suspicions of alleged fraud and corruption.

On June 2008, a group of armed men charged into his office where he was shot and killed instantly. The men fled afterwards. The Durban Organised Crime Unit arrested six suspects at the time who were later convicted and sentenced to life imprisonment in 2013 by the Mtunzini High Court.

The Hawks’ Serious Corruption Investigation took interest after the sentencing in 2013 and launched an investigation into the alleged fraud and corruption at the department.

On Tuesday the Hawks and Empangeni Crime Prevention members swooped into the area and arrested five South African Social Security Agency (SASSA) officials, a doctor and the runner.

Gabriel Ndlovu (54), Mfaniseni Ngcobo (40), Ntobeko Mlaba (51), Balungile Mkhize-Mdletshe (37), Jeniffer Gumede (47), Thembelani Nyawose (40) and Beatrice Shandu (47) briefly appeared at the Empangeni Magistrate Court on Wednesday.

All seven suspects were remanded in custody and will appear again at the same court on 26 and 27 June 2018 where they will apply for bail.

It is alleged that the seven conspired and defrauded SASSA about R25 million between 2005 and 2008 through fraudulent grants. Three of the seven accused are also accused to have allegedly participated in the murder of Thembinkosi Dlamini.

The National Head of the Hawks Lieutenant General Godfrey Lebeya has commended the members who worked around the clock to make a breakthrough in this case.

This demonstrates our zeal to deal with the killing of innocent people and theft of government funds. We will not rest until all suspects involved are arrested and face the full might of the law, said Lieutenant General Lebeya.

Source: South African Police Service