hrc tells home: 'clean yoUr act'

Kingdom Mabuza

Kingdom Mabuza

The racist old age home that was exposed by the Sowetan last month has been told to stop discriminating or face the equity court.

The Human Rights Commission (HRC) confirmed that blacks were living under appalling conditions at the Pieter Wessels Old Age Home in Nigel, Ekurhuleni.

"The situation needs urgent attention," HRC spokesman Vincent Moaga said yesterday. "We are giving the home an ultimatum to clean up their act or we will take them to the equality court."

Moaga said the HRC has concluded its own investigation afterSowetan's story.

The Sowetan investigation revealed that black residents were neglected while whites received "royal treatment".

The Department of Social Development has also lodged a complaint with the HRC.

Reporters were not allowed into the home yesterday.

Management at the home had promised to transform after an earlier visit by the Department of Social Development.

"But there is no change," Moaga said. "It is the same old appalling situation."

The HRC report says that some black residents were moved to the section reserved for whites only on the day the HRC arrived to investigate on March 20.

"The name tags on the doors were still for white residents," the report says. "In one room we found two white residents and one black female.

Both white residents had wardrobes with name tags but the black resident had no wardrobe."

The report also says that, among other things, whites had their needs written on the wall but needs of blacks were not noted.

Moaga says the report has been forwarded to their legal section.