Families in Ngangelizwe Township in Mthatha in the Eastern Cape have voiced their dissatisfaction about being left out of the social relief list during the 21-Day lockdown.
They allege that councillors are selective about which residents to assist with food parcels.
Some of these people survive by selling small items on the streets, but during the lockdown period they have been the hardest-hit and government promised to come to their assistance.
Hunger is evident in the area, with no guarantee of a meal anytime soon.
Children, who are normally fed through a school feeding scheme have suffered the most during the lockdown period.
Government has introduced a social relief measures to assist the most impoverished families during the lockdown.
However, councillors assigned to register needy families are allegedly not transparent when it comes to drafting the list of qualifying people.
A resident, Bongiwe Mankayi says they are left with no option.
Mankayi says, “We are very unhappy about this process of registering needy people. We have been skipped, we do not understand why. We are told a list have been compiled for the groceries but no one came to us, we do not know why. We were never called in a meeting, we just overhead that there is a list of people that will benefit.”
In the video below, NGOs say children dependent on school feeding schemes are going to go hungry:
‘I do piece jobs for a living’
Another resident, Nowethu Malima, who has six children says life is difficult for her.
Malima says, “I do piece jobs for a living, collecting and doing laundry in the neighbourhoods is my daily living. I have six kids, I did not register for grocery as these people (concillors) have not come to me.”
The O R Tambo District municipality says no reports have been brought to their attention about the Social Relief of the Stress Committees.
O R Tambo District Municipality Mayor, Thokozile Sokhanyile says, “On the allegations of councillors not taking other people in the social relief of the stress list, we have not been given that information but now as it has been brought to our attention, we will look at that. We have held meeting with Social Development and Sassa where Sassa articulated to us how much is given for each magisterial district.”
Sokhanyile says all beneficiaries will be assessed to avoid fraud.
“The councillors have been told to make submissions of those people but it’s not going to be a blanket approach, they are going to be assessed as it is the requirement of cause but we are saying that the people who are in dire need must not be left out.”
In the video below, a good Samaritans in Brits donate food parcels to residents:
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