Court hears of inflated price of school stationery

court trial generic .

Stationery prices quoted by suppliers were allegedly marked up by between 30 percent and 45 percent before being submitted to the KZN Department of Education, it was revealed on Tuesday in the Indiza fraud trial.

Testifying against her former employer, Indiza Infrastructure Solutions boss Jabulani Mabaso, Nqobile Kwit shane told the Pietermaritzburg High Court that she inflated the prices as per Mabaso’s instructions.

Kwitshane said she was responsible for approaching KZN schools about their stationery requirements and would then collate quotes from suppliers and prepare a spreadsheet with the relevant information.

This spreadsheet showed the different discounted prices by the suppliers, and the quantity required by the schools.

Kwitshane said she would mark up the discounted prices on Mabaso’s instructions, and then submit it to him for authorisation.

Once Mabaso gave the go-ahead, the quotes were submitted to the education department and orders for the stationery were placed.

In terms of the agreement between Indiza and the department, Mabaso was only entitled to a minimal management fee and he was not entitled to mark up the original quotations by the suppliers.

Mabaso stands accused of defrauding the department of R200 million. It is alleged that he made his staff fabricate and inflate invoices.

Mabaso has pleaded not guilty to four charges of fraud, seven of forgery and seven of uttering. The charges relate to a tender awarded to Indiza by the KZN Department of Education for the supply of stationery to schools in 2005.

Indiza acted as an agent for the department. The company is being liquidated.

Mabaso is out on bail of R500 000. The trial continues.


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