Labour Minister Membathisi Mdladlana has welcomed the prosecution of a Western Cape woman for allegedly masquerading as a departmental inspector and extorting money from local businesses.
The woman, who has since been released on a R1 000 bail, was apprehended last week on Thursday by a Department of Labour inspector.
Spokesperson Page Boikanyo said this followed a Muizenberg supermarket owner lodging a complaint about a woman who was selling government posters, which were printed the Basic Conditions of Employment Act, at R500.
"The bogus official allegedly told her victims to "pay up or face a fine of R5 000" from the department.
"The Department of Labour official said on his arrival at the scene, the suspect was still insisting she was representing the department, and was not fazed even when he identified himself as the real government inspector," said Mr Boikanyo.
It later emerged that the accused had earlier allegedly extorted R980 from a butcher to have his business "registered on a database".
"It is true that businesses are obliged by law to keep certain posters containing summaries of the Basic Condition of Employment Act and the Employment Equity Act.
"A copy of the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Act must also be kept on their premises, however, we are fully aware of fraudulent individuals who masquerade as government officials and playing on the fears of business people to buy their merchandise or face fines," Minister Mdladlana said.
Copies of the A1 size summary of the two Acts are obtainable at a cost of R3.00 from the Government Printers in Pretoria while the gazette version of the OHS Act is purchasable for just R5.