‘Allow us to address issues’


The family of another former resident of the Sarepta AFM Old Age Home has come forward about their relative who lived at the home in 2013. Ruby Petersen, aged 80, was at the home in 2013, and died there.

The dead woman’s sister, Mary Paulse, and her daughter, Ruth Petersen, claim she lost about 20kg while she was at the home and her personal hygiene and care were neglected.

Sihle Ngobese, spokesperson for Social Development MEC Albert Fritz, responded by SMS last week to the latest claim and a request for an update into the investigation into the home (“Woman underfed at home,” Northern News, February 24).

He said, “Our team is still investigating.

“As a side note, it’s a tad concerning that people send complaints your way, with seeming ease, but not to our offices with the same efficiency. We implore people to come forward to us with complaints and EVIDENCE (sic), so that action can be taken.”

The women told Northern News they had taken up the issue with the department at the time but had not received feedback.

Sam Tshabalala, the chairman of the old age home executive welfare board, responded to queries by Northern News, which also included claims of intimidation by the original complainants, Christo Wort and Koos Sadie, on behalf of the board and the old age home.

“I kindly request that you allow the governing structure of the AFM Executive Welfare Board space to address the issues, as we have taken a decision during our previous seating to institute the investigation which is currently underway, and in due course we will be able to address any of the issues that may warrant further attention.”