City to in­ves­ti­gate ‘bribe-for-ten­der’ email

The Mercury - - FRONT PAGE - KAILENE PIL­LAY kailene.pil­lay@inl.co.za

DUR­BAN’S In­tegrity and In­ves­ti­ga­tions Unit is look­ing into how an im­pos­tor could have used eThek­wini city man­ager Sipho Nzuza’s mu­nic­i­pal email ad­dress to so­licit a bribe from a con­struc­tion com­pany bid­ding for a ten­der.

The mu­nic­i­pal­ity con­firmed the probe af­ter it was brought to their at­ten­tion af­ter the com­pany’s direc­tor raised his con­cern with the DA’s eThek­wini whip, Mar­laine Nair.

Ac­cord­ing to Nair, the email sender, pos­ing as Nzuza, made ref­er­ence to a con­tract number for a job in KwaDabeka (ward 20).

The sender re­quested the direc­tor of the com­pany to ur­gently con­tact “Nzuza” on a cell­phone number pro­vided.

The email ad­dress be­longs to “Nzuza” and has the “dur­ban.gov. za” do­main.

The direc­tor, who did not want to be named, con­tacted the per­son pos­ing as Nzuza and was told that R100 000 should be de­posited into a bank ac­count, the de­tails of which were pro­vided by the im­poster.

Ac­cord­ing to Nair, the direc­tor con­tacted his at­tor­ney, who in­ves­ti­gated the bank ac­count and ad­vised him that the mat­ter was fraud­u­lent.

“We are shocked that a fraud­u­lent email com­mu­ni­ca­tion came from a dur­ban.gov.za do­main name, which im­plies that the per­pe­tra­tor is from within the mu­nic­i­pal­ity, so­lic­it­ing bribes while un­der the city (coun­cil’s) pay­roll,” Nair said.

The Mer­cury was un­able to con­tact Nzuza yes­ter­day.

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