A woman identified as Priscilla has come under scrutiny and faced accusations of orchestrating marriages between Pakistani nationals and multiple women within her community for as little as R300 in a shocking revelation that has sent shockwaves through the community of Mogaung village, located just outside Groblersdal in Sekhukhune, Limpopo, South Africa.
Following the charges, other women have come forth to share their stories, casting light on a troubling practise.
SABC reports that Rebone Shabir, aged 36, is among those who have accused Priscilla of involvement in arranging such unions.
Shabir alleges that Priscilla approached her with an offer to marry a Pakistani shop owner in exchange for a monthly fee of R300, which was to be paid until her death.
Shabir’s story is just one among many. She revealed,
“We then went to Johannesburg, where they promised me that they would provide me with R300, which they promptly paid when we returned. In the following month, they paid another R300. Subsequently, they disappeared, and since then, my ID book and my children’s birth certificates have gone missing.”
Gloria Ratau, aged 49, shared her experience, stating,
“Home Affairs informed me that I was married to a foreign national named Muhammed. The day I signed the documents, I was given R120, which means this R120 is what led me to marry a foreign national.”
Following the stories from these women and others who claim that Priscilla approached them for similar arrangements with other shop owners, the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC) conducted an investigation and located Priscilla in the Avalon section of Middelburg, Mpumalanga.
Priscilla, who operates under various aliases, including Priscilla Mashaba and Shakeerah Pediah on Facebook, did not deny the allegations when confronted.
She explained that her husband had approached her to find women for arranged marriages, primarily for citizenship purposes.
Priscilla maintained that all the women had willingly agreed to these arrangements.
The Department of Home Affairs has expressed concern over the matter and announced its intention to conduct a thorough investigation into the marriages in question.
Siya Qoza, a spokesperson for the Department of Home Affairs, stated, “Our records concerning the marriages of the two ladies that you inquired about suggest a need for further investigation.”
The case has been referred to law enforcement, and the Department of Home Affairs is actively pursuing its investigation into the alleged fraudulent marriages.
As this shocking scandal continues to unfold, the community in Limpopo remains in shock, and many are eagerly awaiting the results of the investigations.
The alleged exploitation of vulnerable women for citizenship purposes is a grave matter that must be thoroughly examined to ensure justice is served.
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