State paper proves woman alive

Kamogelo Seekoei

Kamogelo Seekoei

Nomtandao Masanabo, who was mistakenly declared dead and was thought to have been buried, is alive and well.

Gauteng health department spokesman Zanele Mngadi said a letter confirming that 19-year-old Masanabo of Vereeniging was not dead would be issued today.

Last week the chief executive of Kopanong Hospital in Vereeniging, Thomas Nhlapo, referred Sowetan to the department, saying it was in a better position than the hospital to issue such a document.

Masanabo's family needs the document to prove to the Departments of Home Affairs and Social Development that their daughter is alive so that the departments can issue Masanabo with an ID book and reinstate her social grant.

Masanabo, who now has a death certificate, was declared dead after a mix-up occurred at the Ikhwezilokusa Home for the Disabled in De Deur in the Vaal last month.

Four weeks ago Masanabo's mother Maria Masilela buried six-year-old Oratile Noge from Brits, North West, after her identity was confused with that of Masanabo.

The two girls had been living in the same institution and were both mentally handicapped. Both were admitted to the hospital.

Masilela, who also has a mental ailment, could not correctly identify her daughter but was lead to believe that Oratile's medical file was that of her daughter's.

Masilela was later notified by officials from the home that she had buried the wrong girl.

Masilela said she was happy that she was getting her daughter's life in order.

"I am feeling much better now that her documents are being sorted out. I don't know how I would [otherwise] have handled this."