A woman believed to be the Walter Sisulu University (WSU) student who was mistakenly paid R14 million into her student account has defended herself on Facebook, saying she reported the payment to the authorities.
IOL published the post by the university student, in which she says: "(They) allocated more money in a wrong account and that account happened to be mine. So I don't deny anything... the money was loaded on the 1st June and reversed on the 13th August. But the question is how did it happen to be public news. The answer is still simply and right in front of us...(they) forget to mention one part that... I reported the matter to the authorities," says the Facebook post.
"As a responsible person and a member of PASMA, not just a member but a leader of students I went straight to the SRC to report this matter. Today the people who are supposed to be defending me the SRC is quiet, some of them are responsible for the leaking of this information because they want to settle political scores."
The Walter Sisulu University student received the money four months ago and has since been reportedly living it large, spending over R400,000 on fine dining, parties, clothes, and phones -- all of which was posted on social media. An investigation into the incident was launched on Wednesday.
Michael Ansell, chief executive of IntelliMali, which manages the allocation of funds at the Walter Sisulu University's (WSU) students IntelliCard, told IOL the firm was taking legal action against the student who had "helped herself" to the money.
Ansell said on Wednesday the East London-based student received a NSFAS monthly food allowance of R14.1m instead of R1,400 in June
It is alleged that she spent over R800,000 and is being investigated for fraud.
Lawyer Robert Xaba previously told HuffPost SA that the student had been wrong if she spent the money as it did not belong to her.
"Now it will be her word against their word that she went to them when the error occurred, but they did nothing. Either way, she was not supposed to spend money that was not hers. She was not entitled to it," Xaba pointed out.
"If a person receives money mistakenly transferred to their account and uses that money, knowing that the money is not due, that person is guilty of theft," said Aslam Moosajee, lawyer for Norton Rose Fulbright.