The story behind Johannes Mokobi and his innovative car washing service.

The story behind Johannes Mokobi. The young Capetonian who went viral after sharing his innovative mobile car-washing service to pay for studies.


Johannes Mokobi launched ‘JM CarWash‘ as a fundraising idea to raise money for his studies in Web & App Development. He believes that like so many other South Africans, he is working to afford a sustainable life.

But Mokobi hasn’t had an easy life… he was abandoned as a baby at 3 months old & grew up in an orphanage in Johannesburg.

Due to a disadvantaged background and his life journey, the passionate youngster has fallen into a category of people who have not finished their schooling. But Mokobi says that doesn’t mean he is uneducated or uninformed about his potential.


On December, 29 2016, after struggling to find work and not making enough from the odd jobs he was doing, he decided to put all his focus into washing cars full time to raise money to buy a Laptop and Software for his studies.

“I am driven and passionate about entrepreneurship, innovation, development and change that makes things simpler for people.”

“You know looking for a job with limited skills and experience is very challenging, even the very basic once are hard to find. Sitting at home doing nothing leads to desperation and stress.”

But the passionate entrepreneur also saw a gap in the market, to offer a ‘digital experience’ and more affordable car wash concept to vehicle owners that may not have the time to wash their cars weekly.

“I am currently studying online Programming with which will help me earn a skill in creating and developing of websites and mobile apps. Through the car wash business I am aiming to create a platform to earn an income to fund my studies and basic needs.”

Not only does Mokobi plan to grow the ‘JM CarWash’ concept but he also wants to use it as an empowerment program to help other students who want to fund they studies and basic needs.

Mokabi uses his online skills to market his company but also does pamphlet hand-outs to raise awareness and it seems to be working!

Sophie Raibin found one of his flyers in January 2017 and posted it on her Facebook asking people to support the “entrepreneur”. The post went viral with thousands of shares and Good Things Guy originally wrote an article on how South Africans were reacting to the post, offering to help Johannes finish his studies and grow his car wash business.

But Raibin deleted the entire Facebook post 48 hours later after hearing terrible stories about Mokobi scamming people. She contacted us to let us know what she had been through and what she had heard.

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2oceansvibe also wrote an article highlighting instances where people had felt that the talented youngster had ‘taken them for a ride’ which was forwarded to Raibin.

Johannes Mokobi has apparently been using ‘the same story’ before in many instances to garnish support and money.

Another Facebook post relating to Johannes also started going viral at the same time. Written by Paul Cartmel, a Captonian who also had an experience with him.

“Since I’m being forwarded Johannes the carwash guy’s website daily now, I have to tell people about my experience (which wasn’t that pleasant).”

“I need to explain that I picked up on his story almost a year ago and obviously tried to help him. Without going into all the details I offering him a desk at nml, internet access, an old laptop, and to buy out his computer that he’d “sold” to cash crusaders [which i later discovered another friend – you know who you are if you want to comment on this thread – had already “bought” back from Cash Crusaders for him] it became obvious this was a very elaborate scam.”

“Here’s one of the stories I received from a facebook person (I’ll see if she’s willing to come forward) who had a similar experience with Johannes.”

“It’s a great story, it’s the story we all want to be true. It makes the currently fucked up world feel like a better place, but I’d rather warn people (and they can use their own discretion) than have more people feeling jaded by humanity.”

“USE IT, DON’T USE IT, But please don’t just go willy nilly donating money into a private bank account.”

Unfortunately the comments section isn’t all that pretty either:

“Thank you so much for putting this out in the public domain, Paul. I was taken in my Johannes’ story, too – who wouldn’t want to believe in a story of hope, for a change? – and had him in washing my cars. I also heard that he had taken permanent work (seemingly in order to learn CAD) and even checked with the employer that this was the case as I had seen him walking through Lakeside on the very same day he claimed to be at work.”

“He was apparently “off sick” that day When questions were asked, he explained that he had decided against taking the job as he could earn more money (for his ‘studies’) doing the carwash gig. His FB page for the car wash was then taken down and suddenly his phone number was not available ….. His stories are very slick, but as a whole, do not add up.”

And another:

“We gave him a laptop in December that we had spare. He was at my house on Saturday washing our cars.”


“Johannes is very convincing and his story seems like one many would jump at helping. However once i paid to ‘get his laptop back from cash crusaders’ and Paul and i had organised to help him with online courses and free wifi he suddenly ‘got a full time job’ however the very day he told me he was working he was actually in Muizenberg selling the same story again.”

“I happen to know a rather large sum of money was collected at that time for him. i have since heard from someone in JHB who went throught the same story with him. Something does not add up. i wonder if there is not more to the story. A fair sum of money has been collected for his ‘studies’ and yet we never seem to get much further than the car wash????”

Bruce Whitfield took the time to speak to Johannes on 702… and questioned his story. Mokobi opened up and explained that it helped him get by. He used the same story as it was his way of connecting to people in order to survive.

You can listen to the entire interview by clicking here.

We don’t know the full story here, and we’re not about to crush someone’s dreams of making something of themselves but it would be irresponsible of us to ignore that information above, though – so much like Paul, it’s one of those ‘use it don’t use it’ situations.

Sources: JM Car Wash
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A personal crusader on a mission to empower through the power of positive thinking. Activation Architect | CliffCentral Unradio Host | LeadSA Hero | Mail & Guardian Top 200 Young South African | #RAK15 founder

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