A senior Department of Home Affairs official in Springs, Ekurhuleni, is fed up with the "acute" staff shortage at her offices.
Yesterday Sowetan found her frantically and almost single-handedly attending to people.
She said most of the staff had gone for a function in Johannesburg.
"The speech of whoever will be speaking there can always be aired on radio or television so that we will know what was said," she said.
"But no, they had to be ferried to the venue, leaving people stranded. I cannot continue to work like this. I have raised the issue but I obviously have not been heard."
Meanwhile, Sowetan helped two families obtain death certificates after they had waited for about four hours for assistance.
Undertaker Talent Sibisi said: "Bad service is okay but no service at all is something else. The people who are supposed to help us are not here. I have never seen anything like this before.
"We thank Sowetan for intervening. Had you not come we wouldn't have received help," he said.
Another official, Tersia de Sequeira attended to the families.
Departmental spokesman Mantshele Tau did not respond to voice and text messages that we left on his phone.