'Delays with my ID have made me a beggar'

SAD: Celani Sishi. Circa 2009. © Unknown
SAD: Celani Sishi. Circa 2009. © Unknown

AN ELDERLY woman who lost her identity document in 2007 has been forced to rely on neighbours because the Department of Home Affairs in Pinetown is delaying the issue of a new one.

Celani Sishi, 77, lives alone in an RDP house at Ehlanzeni in Inchanga near Hammarsdale.

She said getting her ID book meant a lot to her since she wanted to stop being a burden on her neighbours.

She has no children or close relatives to take care of her.

Sishi said at the moment she was unable to access her pension and was forced to live on handouts from her neighbours.

"I want to apply for my pension and live my life like other people of my age.

"People will at some stage get tired of my problems and let me starve and die," Sishi said.

She said she had been going to the Pinetown Home Affairs offices every second month, only to be told that her application had been unsuccessful. On many occasions she had gone to the Home Affairs offices on an empty stomach.

She also complained that she was not given valid reasons for being sent from pillar to post over the new ID.

"I was at one stage told the problem was that I am share the ID with someone else and they need to sort that out. I am still waiting," said Sishi. She said she was also unable to access aid from the Social Development Department.

Spokesperson for the department Ronnie Mamoepa said they would investigate the matter.

"The matter will be dealt with within a week and a progress report will be given."