The Department of Home Affairs’ efforts to curb corruption within the department are finally paying off.
This comes after a senior Home Affairs official in the White River office in Mpumalanga and four South African citizens, who are allegedly part of the passport fraud syndicates, were arrested on Thursday.
DEPARTMENT DETERMINED TO FIGHT CORRUPTION
DHA vowed earlier this year that they will follow up on all the members of the passport fraud syndicate, be it foreign nationals or South Africans.
In March this year, a Pakistani kingpin was nabbed in a midnight sting operation in the Krugersdorp office.
The department said it has been on the culprit’s trail ever since, in Mpumalanga, Gauteng, KwaZulu-Natal, Limpopo, Eastern Cape and Western Cape.
On Thursday four people were offered R500 each to give up their identities for passport fraud.
The group was transported from Eldorado Park in Gauteng to the Home Affairs office in White River.
The department said the official was performing the treasonous act of facilitating the identity transfer from South Africans to Pakistani nationals. It was for a fee of R5 000 per passport.
“The Pakistani kingpin gets R40 000 from his countrymen who desire South African passports they are not entitled to.
“The successful operation was carried out by Home Affairs Counter Corruption Branch. They worked with other law enforcement agencies including the SA Police Service, the Hawks and Crime Intelligence.”said the department.
OFFICIAL RUNS TO SANGOMA FOR PROTECTION
Furthermore, the law enforcement agencies are on the trail of another senior Home Affairs official from the Praktiseer office in Burgersfort, Limpopo.
The official was able to evade arrest last night by running to a sangoma, according to the department.
“He doesn’t know sangomas in the country are tired of crime and corruption and do cooperate with law enforcement. It is a matter of time that we catch up with him.”said the department.
DHA minister, Aaron Motsoaledi said last week they nabbed a Bangladeshi national trying to escape through one of the airports with a fraudulent passport.
During his arrest, they reported that they know the Home Affairs official who issued the fraudulent passport.
“We are on her trail and we will soon put her behind bars. Law enforcement officers are also on the trail of two other South Africans from Eldorado Park who are part of the syndicate.
“There is no place to hide for fraudsters. They shall be in orange overalls within a short space of time,”said Minister Motsoaledi.
People with information can contact the following units:
- National Anti-Corruption Hotline on 0800 701 701; and
- Home Affairs Counter Corruption Unit on 012 406 4318.