The National Lotteries Commission (NLC) is supposed to pay money to qualifying charities and non-profit organisations for projects designed to assist communities and identified beneficiaries. However, investigations by OUTA show that at least some of the money has not been used for its intended purpose. So, we have lodged two criminal complaints with the SAPS over the NLC’s use of funding – and specifically something called “proactive funding”. 

Proactive funding is founded on the Lotteries Amendment Act which allows the NLC to identify causes that may be funded without a formal grant application. This may seem like a good idea, but our investigations show that some of these funds are not used for their intended purpose. Instead, once the funds reach the charities, they are either hijacked or misused. 

An example is where funds were paid by the NLC to a charity for the construction of a sporting facility. OUTA’s investigation suggested that this facility was never built.

When charities apply to the NLC for grant funding in terms of the proactive funding model, they need to meet specific criteria. These include that the charity should have been in existence for at least two years – it must also have the capacity to use the funding for the purpose it applied for. OUTA has found that some charities did not exist prior to applying for funding, had no track record of doing any charitable work, or in many cases simply shared a business addresses with other established entities.

OUTA has previously engaged with the NLC on its responsibility to ensure that the grant funding is used for its intended purpose. The NLC assured us that all necessary checks and balances are in place. The fact that looting continues under the auspices of proactive funding is a serious concern and, since the NLC has failed to take action, we have now lodged two criminal complaints with the SAPS, concerning two organisations:

  • Zibsifusion (received a grant of R10 million in November 2018)

  • I Am Made for God’s Glory (was awarded R11.3 million in April 2018)

The directors of both organisations were Liesl Moses, Tsietsi Joseph Tshabalala and Lesley Ramulifho. The grant was for the building of toilets at various Limpopo schools. However, an OUTA investigation found that this work was not completed.

The grant to IAMFGG was meant to fund the construction of a sports complex, but appears to have been used instead to buy an Ocean Basket restaurant franchise for Ramulifho.