AWKWARD: Nkhwa and Kgotlaetsho exchanging words

Says ‘supplier’ who lost YDF beneficiary’s P90, 000.

A young Francistown mother, the recipient of a P100, 000 grant from the Youth Development Fund, has been left with nothing after a would-be supplier vanished with her money.

29-year-old Boga Nkhwa’s troubles began after she deposited P89, 000 into Neo Kgotlaetsho’s bank account on the 10th December 2018, cash meant for the purchase of a mobile refrigerator.

“He told me he’d leave on the 16th to meet with a supplier in Durban. But when I called him six days later he had changed his story,” said Nkhwa, cautiously cradling her baby as she speaks to The Voice.

Nkhwa said after a couple of days, the 37-year-old Kgotlaetsho stopped taking her calls altogether.

“After some time he sent me a picture of a mobile fridge through WhatsApp and claimed that he was in Durban with the supplier. I’d later learn that he was lying. He just downloaded the fridge from the internet and sent it to me!

“I confronted him and then he stopped taking my calls for weeks,” narrated Nkhwa, the subject of her anger, Kgotlaetsho seated silently beside her, his head bowed meekly.

Confused and worried, she reported the matter to Central Police in Francistown.

She said after the police contacted him, Kgotlaetsho told her that he had lost the money and was hiding in Kanye.

“Initially he told me that he’d used the money and would pay me back. He later changed his story and said the money was stolen, but promised to pay me back within three weeks,” continued the irate mum, her temper rising as she told The Voice how Kgotlaetsho finally came back to Francistown in February and was called in by the police for questioning.

“In his statement to the police he said the money was safe and that he’d deliver the mobile fridge in a few days. He was given 14 days to have fulfilled his promise, but he never did,” said Nkhwa, gesturing angrily at the thin man, who shuffles nervously next to her.

In his defence, Kgotlaetsho, who has not yet been charged with anything, claimed that he lied to both Nkhwa and the cops because he was afraid of being detained.

He said after receiving the money from Nkhwa, he deposited it into someone’s account to help him buy the fridge in Durban.

“I can’t remember how much I deposited. But he failed to buy the fridge and sent back R28, 500,” said Kgotlaetsho, who takes a deep breath before the next part of his narrative.

“The truth is the money was stolen. I had the cash in my bag and I realised that the money was missing when I got to the bus rank. I panicked and switched off my phone. I also didn’t want Nkhwa to worry so I lied and sent her a picture of myself at the border. I honestly thought I would be able to recover the money,” he told The Voice.

“I also lied to the police. I hoped I’d have repaid her within 14 days,” he added.

Asked why he had to carry cash to Durban, Kgotlaetsho explained that his suppliers don’t want any bank transactions.

“I think they don’t want to pay tax in South Africa,” he surmised.

An apologetic Kgotlaetsho has written an affidavit promising to repay the money by the 30th of June. Time will tell if he keeps his latest promise.

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