E Cape granny frustrated as she struggles to annul ‘bogus’ marriage

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The 68-year-old Nomachule Philda Qangule from kuNgolo Village in Libode, in the Eastern Cape, recently found out, to her shock, that she is married.

Home Affairs officials informed her that she is married to Mfanakhe Solomon Zulu of KwaZulu- Natal. Home Affairs records show she tied the knot in 1985 and her husband died in 1995.

Home Affairs officials say they cannot annul the marriage when the alleged spouse is deceased.

Her social grant and her granddaughter’s foster care grant were suspended because her particulars did not match.

“It was in 2019 when I was even invited by the Home Affairs district manager. I was very shocked when he told me that I am married and this will never change. He said they will not facilitate a divorce when my husband is dead. I never married and this is frustrating,” she says.

The Department of Home Affairs says it will accelerate its investigation. But a struggle is expected as some documents have been digitised and others are manual.

The provincial Home Affairs Manager, Gcinile Mabhulu, says these incidents are common, but did not say how many are on their records.

“It is quite common, there are number of cases that are similar to this that are a subject of investigation. Once we come across that especially when the client has come forward to report the misdemeanor or the unpleasant strange matter, all we do is to take the complaint and subject it to investigation,” explains Mabhulu.

“I do not want this Solomon Mfanakhe Zulu, I do not know him. I never married  him. I want to be Nomahule Philda Qangule and I am comfortable with that name. I applied for this Identity Document in 1995 using my name. I was born in 1953 and I am over 60 years now. I want government to get rid of this marriage, it is not real it was just made up,” says Qangule.

The department urges people with similar cases to report them for investigation.