Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Former BFA employees facing multiple counts of fraud

Former Botswana Football Association (BFA) employees Odirile Daka and Stephen Maleka are facing multiple charges of defrauding the always cash trapped association.

Daka and Maleka were recently arraigned before Extension II magistrate court Babedi Rankoro but their plea was reserved for later date and the accused can bring legal representation.

The two were granted bail on condition that they pay P5 000 as surety and each to bring a single person surety who will also pay P5 000. They are expected to appear again before the court on the 5th November 2018.

The duo, which is accused of illegally obtaining money amounting over P600 000.00 is facing at least 34 charges of intentionally defrauding the BFA.

Daka and Maleka, who were employed as BFA accounts officer and BFA competitions officer respectively, have been charged with obtaining by false pretences contrary to the section 308 of the penal code, cap 08:01 of the laws of Botswana.

The duo is accused of defrauding the BFA by diverting into their own personal accounts money that was supposed to have been paid into service providers’ accounts.

While the alleged theft is said to have occurred over a period spanning a year, the discrepancies were only detected when suppliers approached BFA demanding payment of the services the rendered.

Confident they had paid, it is said the BFA was caught off guard when the creditors revealed no monies had been paid. It was only when the BFA went to the bank that they realized the names of the payee were on the payroll but the final destination account of the payee had been switched and was not the same as the one on all the paperwork signed for.

“This was someone intelligently using technology to siphon monies out of the BFA. All the paperwork is done with proper details, payees’ names and accounts all correct. The problem only starts when money is paid through the bank. That is when they change only the account numbers but not the names of the payees. This made it difficult for the crime to be picked as all the details on the paperwork are correct,” a source said at the time.

 

The two are suspected to have been working together with the intention to defraud the BFA, are said to have diverted the alleged funds over a period of eleven months, starting in March last year.

It is suspected that when processing payment for the BFA suppliers, the perpetrators did all the paperwork right but would in the final steps, put their own accounts under the names of the companies they were supposed to pay.

Daka is charged with seventeen charges alone and another seventeen charges together with his co-accused, Maleka.

Using his Barclays Bank account number, 158474, Daka is said to have at different dates illegally taken varying amounts of monies meant to pay BFA creditors.

The creditors included, among others, Honey Moon Hotel, Harvey World Travel, Cresta Mahalapye, Lerotse Catering Services and Rainbow Service Station.

Other creditors alleged to have fell foul to Daka’s swindling are Romza Investments, Botswana Telecommunications Corporation, Fairgrounds Pharmacy, Botswana University of Agriculture and National Resources, Tlotlo Hotel and Conference Centre, Kwalape Safari Lodge, Desert Sands Motel, Spring Travel, Classic Kitchens, Renders Hospitality and Emergency Assist.

In other charges, Daka and Maleka jointly and with common intent to defraud are alleged ‘to have used Maleka’s Barclays bank account number 1559316′ to obtain on different occasions the sum of P16 600.00, P16 600.80 and P 15 678.35 meant to pay Village Health Pharmacy.

The two suspects on jointly on two occasions paid into Maleka’s account P17 248.00 and P22 400.00 meant for White City Discount, P10 282.76 and P9 936.16 meant Botswana Power Corporation as well as P12 419.48 due to premier league sponsors company BTC was also not lucky and the payment of never reached them.

Other companies hit hard by the duo’s theft are Maud Camping (P32 000.00), Shield Security (P26 902.30), Andansonia (P52 810.00) and Lipro Executive Catering (P44 035.60).

The BFA was also defrauded more money meant to pay Nationwide Travel, P41 000.00, Rainbow Service Station, P4 453.28, Aquarian Tide Hotel P4 036.08 and Pro Guard Security P5 824.00. The two acted jointly and paid all the money into Maleka’s bank account.

Daka and Maleka were suspended in February after the BFA detected fraud and abuse of office on their side. The case was reported to the police and was forwarded to serious Crime Squad who did the investigations and handed the case to the Directorate of Public Prosecutions (DPP).

In February, the officer commanding of serious Crime Squad, detective Senior Superintendent, Phenyoetsile Nnanaakoko said they have gathered enough evidence and believe they have a strong case against the two suspects.

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