Man fakes sister’s death to claim insurance
By Noah Pito
A 56-year-old Banket man who attempted to get rich via the express route was arrested for trying to defraud First Mutual Life Assurance Company (FML) of thousands of dollars in funeral assistance by falsely claiming that his sister had died.
He was, however, stopped in his tracks before laying his hands on the treasure after suspicious company officials later discovered the sister was alive.
Richard Mumbalo was last week ordered to perform 350 hours of community service when he appeared before a Kadoma magistrate.
Magistrate Farai Gwitima initially sentenced him to 16 months in jail, but suspended 10 months on condition he performs community service.
The magistrate also suspended the remaining six months on condition of good behaviour. Sometime last month, Mumbalo hatched a plan to make a “quick buck” through the firm. He then “sweet-talked” his sister into releasing her national identity card.
Armed with the card, he approached the local councillor and told him that his sister had died. The councillor subsequently confirmed the death through a letter, making it possible for Mumbalo to secure a death certificate. He used the death certificate to claim funeral assistance from FML.
Everything seemed to be going according to plan until FML area manager Mr Sidwell Mudengezerwa drove to the woman’s home to confirm the said death. Mr Mudengezerwa was shocked to discover that she was alive and well.
It was then that 65-year-old Mrs Monica Magada narrated how her brother had hoodwinked her into releasing the national identity card. Mr Mudengezerwa later reported the matter at Chinhoyi Police Station.
The case had to be referred to Kadoma where Mumbalo had made the funeral assistance claim.