The above act has been signed by President Cyril Ramaphosa and assented on the 13th August 2019.
The NQFA deals with the person who falsely or fraudulently misrepresents, to hold a qualification that is registered with the National Qualifications Framework or qualifications offered by a recognised, established, declared or merged and accredited education institution or skills development provider in term of the NQFA.
The NQFA takes it a Step further by also making it an offence for any Education institution or Skills development provider, its agents or directors to claim to be registered and accredited as an education institution or skills development provider in terms of the laws of the Republic (when they are not).
Section 32B of the NQFA makes it an offence to misrepresent your qualifications on your Curriculum Vitae (This will apply to potential job seekers).
The new law does not just limit the offence to lying on a job application, but has extended it to lying on social media platforms like LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, etc.
In most instances persons are guilty of misrepresenting the following on their CV’s:
When a person is found guilty of the above misrepresentation, they must be informed and the findings must be recorded in the register of misrepresented qualifications and part-qualifications or fraudulent qualifications and part-qualifications.
There is a reciprocal duty upon employers and education institutions to verify whether the qualifications or part qualifications of such persons are registered on the national learner’s record database. If not, they must take it a step further and refer the qualification to the South African Qualifications Authority for verification (as it could be a foreign qualification).
A person found guilty of such misrepresentation on their CV is liable to a fine or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years, or to both a fine and such imprisonment.
Any Educational Institution or Skills Development Provider, its Agents or Directors, who are found guilty, an offence in terms of the above may be ordered to close its business and declared unfit to apply and register any education institution, skills development provider or become an agent of any foreign institution in the Republic offering a qualification or part-qualification on the NQFA or foreign qualification or part-qualification for a period not exceeding 10 years.
The NQFA places a duty on the employer or any other person to report any person claiming to have a qualification that they do not have, as same is now a criminal offence.
Contributor: Nombuso Zama (Associate) (Collections & Litigation Departments) (Pietermaritzburg Office)
Tel: 033 341 9100
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