Bribery has become synonymous with South Africa

Advert that the Mpumalanga Department of Health placed on their website

South Africa is a beautiful country but is very much plagued with crime in all forms, for example, a man going by the name Mnisi calls bursary applicants and requests a bribe of R5 000 to fast-track their applications.

Last year, the Mpumalanga Department of Health released an advert on its official website inviting Mpumalanga Province residents aged between 18 and 36 to apply online for a nursing bursary at the Mpumalanga Nursing College. The application was said to be strictly online, the closing date being 31 October 2018.

This morning, KwaTsaDuza Times received an anonymous tip alleging that there is an individual who is calling applicants and telling them that they need to give him R5 000 so that he can fast track their applications. “Emm .. I got a call from this guy, he never mentioned his name, he had all documents that had my information. He said to give him R5 000 in order to put me in, but for now I should just deposit R2 500 then the rest I’ll pay him once I’m inside.”

Upon receiving this tip, we called this individual and he identified himself as “Mnisi”. While talking to him over the phone, he said that he works in the Human Resources (HR) department in Nelspruit and has contacts in the HR head office. The alleged con-man requested an amount of R5 000 for himself and R10 000 for his colleagues at head office.

The Mpumalanga Department of Health said that they had no knowledge of this as nobody had reported this to them. The HR Bursary Department said, “The interview process is complete, only awaiting the approval of the Head of Department (HOD). There are no more calls being made to applicants for interviews.”

The HR Busary Department also stressed that there were no physical applications accepted because all applications were done online and very few people had access to those applications. “Applicants were called from a landline number when called for interviews, not from a cellphone,” added the department.

The advert that the Department had placed on its website has a clear warning, in red, at the bottom reading: “NB: PLEASE NOTE THAT ANYONE SOLICITING/OFFERING A BRIBE FOR ADMISSION AT THE COLLEGE OF NURSING IS COMMITTING A CRIMINAL OFFENCE AND SHOULD BE REPORTED TO THE POLICE/AUTHORITIES.” The HR Bursary Department did promise to investigate the matter so that nobody falls victim to this scam.

We tried again to contact “Mnisi” to hear his side of the story before publishing, but could not get hold of him. We still do invite him to contact us at this email address: