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By Ilse de Lange


Fraudster ex-professor at UP, wife still insist they are innocent

Former economic sciences professor Ouludele Akinboady and his wife Nancy will be sentenced at the end of August.

A former economics professor at the University of Pretoria and his wife, who have been convicted of racketeering and fraud, still insist they are innocent.

Former economic sciences professor Ouludele Akinboady and his wife Nancy testified before the High Court in Pretoria that they were innocent and had done nothing wrong.

The couple, former Sars official Leslie Moonsamy, former Venda University professor Agyapong Gyekye and businessperson Boitumelo Boshego were last year convicted on a range of charges, including racketeering and several of fraud.

Moonsammy’s former boss, former Sars deputy director Mandisa Makwela, was acquitted on all charges. Judge Sulette Potterill said she might have her suspicions about Makwela’s knowledge of a pattern of racketeering, with the manipulation of quotations for training/research work for Sars, but the state could not prove her guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

She found that Akinboade had headed a criminal enterprise, which falsified quotations to secure lucrative research and training contracts with Sars.

She rejected Akinboade’s claims that he had fallen victim to a “rogue unit” within Sars as “a red herring”, to hide his involvement in the fraudulent scheme.

A seventh accused, former University of SA employee Emilie Djoumessi, who is a Cameroonian citizen, is still at large after fleeing the country.

A probation officer said in a report the Akinboade’s children had no relatives in South Africa and would have to be placed in a children’s home if both their parents were sent to prison.

Akinboade resigned after his arrest and now teaches students privately, while his wife dropped her studies towards an honours degree in public administration and was a full-time housewife.

Prosecutor Hein van der Merwe asked the court to sentence all of the accused to imprisonment, except Gyekye, who was 70 years old, sickly and had already repaid all of the money he received from the scheme. He argued that social workers would manage the process regarding the Akinboade’s children.

The trial was postponed to the end of August for sentencing.

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