School head in $25 000 scam

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THE HEAD at Amaswazi Primary School in Bulawayo is in trouble after she allegedly failed to account for over $25 000 school funds.

Report by Silas Nkala

Elizabeth Nyathi (57) was not asked to plead to theft when she appeared before Bulawayo magistrate Gladmore Mushove this week.

The magistrate remanded her out of custody to September 6 for trial.

The prosecutor Jeremiah Mutsindikwa told the court that Nyathi of Luveve in Bulawayo, is employed by the Education, Sport, Arts and Culture ministry as head at Amaswazi Primary School in Pumula North.

The court heard that in September 2009 Nyathi joined Amaswazi Primary School as the head.

It is the State case that during the period from February 28 to March 22 this year, the school was audited by complainants Artwell Day Musvibe and Thwasile Nyoni internal auditors for the Education ministry.

Nyathi failed to produce supporting levy books, receipts or documents to show how $7 885 tuition fees, which was receipted and not banked, $6 078 tuition fees being cash left over from withdrawal amounts for paying service providers and $3 266 general purpose fund being left over from withdrawal amounts for paying service providers, were utilised.

In the second count the State indicated that Amaswazi Primary School, as a government school and the collection, banking, withdrawals and use of school levy funds, was supposed to be administered by the school development association (SDA).

The court heard that in 2009 when Nyathi joined the school, she introduced statutory instruments for private schools development committees thereby becoming chief accounting officer and signatory to the SDA account.

It is alleged she would only consult the other signatory to the SDA account, Oscar Sikombingo, the chairman, when she needed his signature for withdrawals.

Between February and March this year, the internal auditors from the ministry went to audit the school accounts books.

Nyathi failed to produce levy books, receipts, or documents to show how a total of $7 845,70 had been utilised.

A report made to the police led to her arrest. The total amount allegedly unaccounted for is $25 074,70.

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