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MP's told- "There was no error" after millions land in student's account

Service provider, IntelliMali, says its processes did not record an error after R14.1 million was transferred into a Walter Sisulu University (WSU) student's account. 

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The service provider contracted by the University to distribute the National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) funding to students, was briefing the portfolio committee on Higher Education and Training in Parliament on Wednesday. 

The student, Sibongile Mani, is reported to have spent more than R800 000 of the money. 

CEO, Michael Ansell, told members of parliament the student's file was processed correctly. 

"There were 3735 Walter Sisulu students in that batch. The file in question was processed correctly in terms of our verifications. There was no oversight error or negligence by anyone from our team in uploading her file," says Ansell. 

He says according to their systems the student received R1400. 

Ansell says Mani made several transactions on the day the money was allocated. 

"She logged into her account at 13:09 on the 1st of June and at that moment she would have been aware that she had R14.1 million in her account. 

She checked again at 14:00 and made a small purchase at Steers for R56.67. 

She then went back for another purchase at Steers for R339 at 15:20 and later spent R20 000," says Ansell.

He says the student managed to find loopholes in the system by colluding with merchants who were able to give her cash. 

NSFAS CEO, Steven Zwane, says Mani's behaviour has violated her contract with NSFAS. 

"We have decided to wait for the outcomes of the investigation and implement recommendations coming from that," says Zwane. 

IntelliMali has hired an audit firm to conduct a forensic investigation while a case of theft has been opened against Mani with the SAPS.

Members of Parliament were however sceptical of the explanations given - which included no proper account for how the inflated amount of money landed in the student's account. 



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