A blind woman from Hammanskraal, outside Pretoria, is appealing for assistance to regain her eyesight following an alleged botched eye surgery by doctors at the Dr George Mukhari Academic Hospital. Mpho Masoga went for an emergency eye surgery in 2019 and lost her eyesight in the process.

She accuses the hospital of sending her from pillar to post after they promised her vision would be restored after a few weeks.

What was meant to be a life-changing procedure has now turned into a nightmare for 28-year-old Masoga. Her routine eye check resulted in an emergency ocular surgery to rectify her partial vision. Instead, she completely went blind. She was diagnosed with ocular surface disease and dry eyes in 2014.

“I went to George Mukhari in 2014 to give birth. I gave birth through a C-section. I was then told that my eyes were affected during birth and started wearing prescription glasses until 2019 when I underwent an eye operation. Then it was over for me.”

Masoga says the hospital promised to rectify the damage but was later told the procedure could not be done last year due to medical procedures being postponed as a result of COVID-19. The mother of one says she can no longer watch her life pass her by.

“I have a child. She’s still young. She’s in school and I’ve never seen her in a school uniform. I can’t sleep. It’s stressing me that they have to do everything for me. I’ve attempted suicide on three occasions because I felt like a burden.”

Her mother, Diana Masoga who has now turned into her full-time caregiver, says her daughter’s condition is dire.

“So, we now take Mpho as a new-born because we have to prepare her bath. We have to assist her to go to the toilet. Our toilets are outside. Sometimes when I’m busy, she ends up relieving herself. You see how difficult it is.”

The hospital has, meanwhile, put blame on Masoga saying she defaulted treatment in the past, but she denies this. In a written media statement, the Gauteng Health Department says further interventions can be considered depending on the progression of the disease without any indication on how long she has to wait.

Masoga says she only wants one thing from the hospital.

“I appeal to them to take out whatever they’ve put in my eyes, so I can go back to my normal self. Because this is hurting me a lot. I’ve lost weight. I’m too stressed. I have a lot of anger. I just want George Mukhari to bring back my eyesight.”