TELECOMMUNICATIONS giant, Econet Telecom Lesotho has started paying bona fide winners of its Matsebetsebe cash explosion promotion.
The payments came against the background of the rigging of the results of the promotion where former Matsebetsebe Cash Explosion competition consultant Kholu Lieta defrauded the telecommunications giant of M520 000 in prize money.
Lieta was convicted by the Magistrate’s Court in April of fraud in her capacity as the telecom network’s radio announcer for the ongoing Matsebetsebe Cash Explosion competition which was launched last June.
According to the evidence before the court, ETL would give Lieta the list of winners for the competition to announce live on various radio stations.
But Lieta would instead call other people with whom she had arranged to share the prize money. The cash prizes for each winner were between M10 000 and M100 000.
She was sentenced to 10 years in jail with the option of paying a M10 000 fine by Magistrate Masupha Kao.
Econet is however pursuing the civil route to ensure that Ms Lieta and her accomplices pay back the money.
Meanwhile, some of the first batch of winners, Phomane Toloane of Sehlabeng and Teboho Mokone of Upper Thamae will each receive M50 000.
An elated Mokone said that the prizes demonstrated that Econet valued its customers and he urged the public to continue supporting Econet.
“Econet was defrauded but it took the responsibility of paying the rightful winners, that’s really beyond my expectations” Mokone said.
Econet Public Relations Officer, Puleng Masoabi said her company “lived by its values, we have made a promise and we shall fulfill it to continue changing people’s lives”.
The Matsebetsebe cash explosion promotion is an ongoing ETL initiative of giving back to the communities and showing appreciation for their unwavering support.
To enter the promotion, customers send ‘Econet’ to 65100 and start playing the Matsebetsebe trivia at the cost of M1 per SMS.