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A Harrowing Tale of Romance Scams: Jabu Nxumalo’s Experience



Jabu Nxumalo’s Heartbreaking Encounter with a Tinder Scammer

In a vivid recollection, Jabu Nxumalo, a mother from Johannesburg, shared her distressing experience of being scammed by a man she met on Tinder. The man, Joseph Ssekasi, claimed to be from South Sudan and used the alias Deron Mundari. This story sheds light on the growing issue of romance scams in South Africa.

Joining Tinder with the hopes of finding an honest, loving boyfriend, Nxumalo soon found herself courted by Ssekasi. “He seemed like a down-to-earth and respectful person. Little did I know that he was in this relationship for a paycheck in the name of love,” she recounted.

For many years, hardworking women, especially those in steady jobs, have fallen prey to unscrupulous men who target them under the guise of dating. These scams have cost women millions of rand.

Nxumalo’s Ordeal


Within four months of meeting Ssekasi, Nxumalo handed over R510,000, believing it was an investment guided by ancestral voices and prayers. Ssekasi convinced her to raise the money from different banks and hand it over at his Brakpan residence. He even pretended to contribute R700,000 to the supposed investment.

Nxumalo’s nightmare began when Ssekasi claimed he had to travel to Limpopo for business. Their communication continued, but soon, her messages stopped going through. Her intuition urged her to check on Ssekasi’s house, but she hesitated until May 11, 2023, when she found a “house to let” sign on the property. It was then that she realized she had been scammed.

A Disheartening Response from Law Enforcement

Nxumalo reported the scam to the Boksburg police station, where she was initially treated with empathy. However, her hope dwindled after meeting with detective Khumalo, who indicated that catching the scammer would be difficult. A sergeant’s insensitive remark further shattered Nxumalo, pushing her to the brink of suicide. Fortunately, she survived and now actively raises awareness about romance scams.

Ongoing Investigation and Call for Vigilance


The Gauteng police confirmed that the case docket is “temporarily closed” but will be reopened if new evidence emerges. Nxumalo believes Ssekasi and his accomplices continue to operate, inviting vulnerable individuals into fraudulent schemes through social media.

Nxumalo advised women to be vigilant in relationships, highlighting red flags such as excessive interest in personal finances and quick declarations of love. She emphasized the importance of being cautious, especially if a new partner asks for money.

Expert Insights on Romance Scams

Seasoned investigator Calvin Rafadi noted that scammers often target professional women, conning them into taking early retirement or loans. These men feign love, leaving their victims emotionally and financially devastated when the scam is uncovered.

Rafadi suggested circulating pictures of scammers on social media to raise awareness and protect potential victims. He stressed the importance of exposing these heartless individuals to prevent further scams.


A Community Response

More than 20 scammed South African women have teamed up to share pictures of their scammers online, hoping to raise awareness and stop these fraudulent activities. This collective effort aims to alert the public and support law enforcement in identifying and apprehending the culprits.


Jabu Nxumalo’s story is a powerful reminder of the perils of online dating and the importance of vigilance. By sharing her experience and advocating for awareness, she hopes to prevent others from falling victim to similar scams. As the community rallies together, there is hope that these heartless scammers will be brought to justice.

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