A 41 year-old Johannesburg Metro Police Department officer has been sentenced to three years imprisonment or five thousand rand (R5000) fine for accepting a R100 bribe.
Officer Nkgoape Lydia Matsapola was sentenced by the Roodepoort Magistrate Court today (Thursday, 05 October 2017). Matsapola was arrested in a sting operation by members of the National Traffic Anti-Corruption Unit (NTACU) on 27 March last year.
She stopped an under-cover agent for driving a vehicle without a valid licence disc. She accepted a R100 bribe in exchange for allowing the agent to drive away without the required fine. Matsapola was charged under the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act and the magistrate took into account her unique personal circumstances in mitigation of sentence.
She was further sentenced to five years imprisonment suspended for five years provided she is not found guilty of a similar offence against. The magistrate declared her unfit to possess a firearm.
The Road Traffic Management Corporation will now apply to have the officer unregistered as an unauthorised officer to prevent her from ever working in the law enforcement fraternity. The sentence should send a message to other traffic law enforcement officers that bribery and corruption has very negative consequences.
Three other traffic officers have been dismissed by the North West Department of Community Safety and Transport Management after being found guilty of dishonesty.
The three were arrested by NTACU in December 2016 for taking bribes from under-cover officers. An internal disciplinary hearing found that Messrs M S Morule, A L Matome and B Rossouw of breaching the relationship of trust that existed between them and their employer and ordered their dismissal.
The three are expected to appear in the Brits magistrates’ court on charges related to bribery. They are currently on bail of R2000 each.
Meanwhile the Gauteng Department of Community Safety has also dismissed a provincial inspector, Mr Clement Khonke for accepting a R200 bribe from an anti-corruption agent on 24 December 2016.
Mr Khonke is facing criminal charges and is expected to appear in the Springs magistrate court soon. He is currently out on R1000 bail.
Members of the public are encouraged to report fraud and corruption involving traffic law enforcement officers to the National Traffic Anti-Corruption Unit on 0861 400 800 0r Ntacu@rtmc.co.za