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Granny (64) can't get ID

By Alex | Jun 17, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

A LIMPOPO granny is living life below the poverty line because she does not have an identity document at the age of 64.

The ID application by Anna Mmola, of Marirone village in Bolobedu, could not go through because officials at the Department of Home Affairs told her to bring along both her parents to verify her origins.

Mmola said she first applied for an ID in Tzaneen in 1973, but her efforts were all in vain because she was the only surviving member of the Mmola clan.

She said officials at the department told her that her application would never be successful until she brought along her parents or two IDs of her siblings.

"I told them that my parents died in the early 1970s and that all my siblings were also dead but they said they could not help me," she said.

Mmola's sister, Sabina Malatji, who was her last resort for her application to be considered, died in June 2005.

She said she failed to apply for the document when her parents were still alive because they were always ill.

Mmola, who was born in September 1945, said the only time she realised it was important for her to have an ID was after the death of her parents.

The unemployed Mmola lives with her seven children, none of whom are working or have an ID. Because of the predicament over her application, Mmola was unable to access government social grants such as a child support grant and old age pension for her and her children.

She now depends on the goodwill of her neighbours, who give her odd jobs to do in return for food or a bit of money.

"It is not unusual for me and my family to go to bed without dinner. In fact, dinner is a luxury to us because we only eat once in two days or go hungry the whole week," she said.

Mmola said because of her predicament, she used to sell anything from Mopani worms, mogodu, fat cakes and even morogo in order to put bread on the table for her family.

"But all of these efforts have proved useless because I do not have money to stock up for my sales," she said.

"All I am asking is for the government to help me get my ID so that I can stand on my own feet and fend for my children," she pleaded.

Rylinah Maunatlala, an ANC councillor, visited Mmola after Sowetan told her about her plight. She undertook to take her to the department's offices tomorrow.

Attempts to get comment from the department yesterday were unsuccessful.


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