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The Special Investigating Unit (SIU) has welcomed the prosecution of the former acting Head of the Office of the State Attorney in Mthatha and an Eastern Cape-based lawyer on fraud  charges amounting to R331 000.

The two, Sthembele Tshitshi — former acting Head of the Office of the State Attorney in Umthatha — and Xolani Polo, of Polo Attorneys, appeared before the Mthatha Magistrate Court last Thursday on charges of fraud, alternatively theft, amounting to R331 000 and a charge of contravention of Section 38 of the Public Finance Management Act.

“They were released on bail of R5 000 each. The matter has been remanded to 31 May 2021 for further investigations,” said the SIU in a statement.

The prosecution followed the SIU referrals to the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) in 2020 after its corruption and maladministration investigation into the affairs of the Office of the State Attorneys, consequent upon the issuing of Proclamation R33 of 2019 by the President.

The SIU investigated the allegations relating to corruption and maladministration in the Office of the State Attorney and made findings relating to Tshitshi and Polo.

The SIU said the investigations focused on the legal services procured on behalf of the Gauteng and Eastern Cape Health Departments, in respect of claims based on medical negligence and the verification, approval or processing for payment of any invoice or account received in relation to legal services provided or procured.

The proclamation also authorised the SIU to investigate any unlawful or irregular conduct by employees or officials of the Office of the State Attorney or any other party or entity relating to allegations of corruption and maladministration.


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