By Staff Reporter WINDHOEK Attempts to defraud the Motor Vehicle Accident Fund were detected by the fund's authorities during the last six months. This has led to several arrests and convictions. The cases range from fabricated loss of support claims to fabricated and exaggerated injuries. The MVA nabbed Iyaloo Nakakoti alongside a Home Affairs official Idda Magano, who attempted to defraud the fund by claiming for loss of support on behalf of a deceased relative of Nakakoti, whose name cannot be revealed at this stage. Nakakoti is alleged to have approached the fund with three falsified birth certificates, posing as the biological mother of the deceased's children. Investigations however painted another picture, and it came to light that the deceased had no children and that all the supporting documents and sworn statements were in fact falsified with the assistance of Magano. The suspects were arrested and appeared before court. Also nabbed were Victor Kufwa, a brother to a deceased claimant and his accomplice Peter Mkini, a former police officer. Both were arrested on charges of attempting to defraud the fund. The two suspects instituted claims of loss of support on behalf of Kufwa's late brother claiming that they were the guardians and caretakers of his three children. It was established during investigations that the three kids are in fact not in the care of either one of the suspects but their biological mothers. Another suspect Eliazer Stephanus was also arrested and appeared before a Windhoek magistrate after it was discovered that he faked and exaggerated injuries in respect of an accident he was involved in towards the end of last year. Of all the cases, only one has thus far resulted in a conviction, after accused Willem Hartzenberg, a school principal in the Gibeon area was convicted after submitting fraudulent funeral expenses claim to the fund. Hartzenberg was fined N$5 000. He is reported to have paid the fine already. Against this background, Acting Head of Corporate Services of the MVA Ruben Uupindi, stressed that the fund would leave no stone unturned in rooting out corruption by individuals who intend to turn the fund into a cash cow. "The fund has taken a strong stance against fraud. This must serve as a strong reminder to all perpetrators and would-be offenders that crimes of this nature definitely do not pay and that the fund will leave no stone unturned in bringing these criminals to book," charged Uupindi in a statement.
2008-06-09 00:00:00 10 years ago