A former teacher, Thembisile Lilian Dladla, is in dire straights after being left high and dry since her retirement from teaching in March last year.
Dladla, 65, from Mbilane in Ulundi, retired after 30 years of service to the department of education as a primary school teacher.
But since her retirement she has not received a cent of her pension from the department.
She last taught at KwaMaduma Primary School in Nongoma.
"I have been forced to live on handouts and the mercy of people around me," Dladla said. "I dedicated my life in ensuring that children have bright futures but today I have nothing to show, except emotional pain."
She said since her retirement in March last year she had not received any of the funds owed and now stands to lose her home and its contents.
"I could soon be homeless if the threats by the bank are anything to go by," Dladla said. She said after retiring she received a letter from the department promising her money at the end of April, but it was another empty promise.
"I did not get my money and after enquiring, I received more correspondence from the department in June saying that I will get my money in two months' time.
"At the end of August I received yet another letter, making the same promise. That was the last time I received correspondence from them.
"Life is hard and as if that is not enough, Ithala Bank, which helped me buy the house, is threatening to repossess it because I have failed to honour the repayments.
"I have been paying a monthly bond of more than R1000, and the last payment was made in July last year.
"I'm now in arrears because of the department and I don't blame the bank for the threats because I am responsible for paying."
Department of education spokesperson Mbali Thusi said she was not aware of the problem faced by Dladla and promised to investigate.
"We will have to check with the human resources department to see why she has not received her money."