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By Kyle Zeeman

Digital News Editor

‘IEC commissioner’ offers provincial leader dodgy deal to swing elections

The UDM was approached in a similar scam back in January, with imposters claiming they could get the party more parliamentary seats.

The Electoral Commission of South Africa (IEC) has lifted the lid on a WhatsApp scam promising to sway next week’s national and provincial elections.

According to the commission, an imposter pretending to be IEC CEO Sy Mamabolo approached politicians with an offer to influence poll results.

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“The impostor is active on WhatsApp using two numbers. The first is a WhatsApp business account bearing the profile image of the CEO. The other is a private account of someone named ‘Moloi (IEC IT SPECIALIST)’ who claims to represent CEO Mamabolo.”

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Beware of IEC scams

It said scammers had spoken to at least one provincial leader of a political party with its offer to pull illegal moves to bring in votes.

“The aim of the scam is ostensibly monetary gain for manipulating the outcomes of the 2024 elections in favour of the relevant targeted recipient,” it explained.

It said such interference would be “impossible” because of safety controls.

“The Electoral Commission appeals to political candidates and members of the public to contact the commission to verify any information should they be contacted by anyone claiming to be CEO Mamabolo. If need be, to report the matter to the South African Police Service (SAPS).”

UDM approached by ‘official’ to rig votes

The United Democratic Movement (UDM) was approached in January by an alleged scammer pretending to be IEC chair Mosotho Moepya. The imposter promised to get the party extra seats in Parliament.

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The scammer said all the party needed to do was purchase an SSD from them that would tamper with the hardware of the IEC systems without anyone knowing.

Holomisa reported the interaction to the IEC and said the commission should safeguard all votes cast.

“This incident necessitates greater transparency in terms of information on the hardware and software of IEC service providers,” Holomisa said at the time.

Additional reporting by Eric Naki