After living in the forest for over three years, the Dlamini family’s suffering will soon be over. This comes after the assurance by the KwaZulu-Natal MEC for Education Kwazi Mshengu that the government will be assisting the family with a new home.
Mshengu together with Pastor Bheki Nxumalo and eThekwini Exco member Councillor Thanduxolo Sabelo visited the Dlaminis on Friday after the news about a family of six that lives deep in a forest in Sherwood, Ward 30 broke out. Bonisiwe Dlamini has been living in a four room shack in the forest with five children.
They have to cross a river to get to the main road and back. The path to the shack in the forest passes through dense trees. You have to cross a bridge built of poles as there is a river below to get to the main road. Dlamini told MEC Mshengu that all she wishes for is a dignified home and a trading permit so that she could earn a living for her family.
She said attempts to get assistance from the local councillor had failed and she had no choice but to build a shack in the forest for her family to have shelter. To put food on the table, Dlamini sells cardboard that she collects on the street. She also has a fruit stand near the garage in Westwood Mall.
MEC Mshengu said he was shocked and devastated to see people living in such a condition and has committed himself to assisting the Dlamini’s.
“Government is there to assist people and when I heard about the Dlamini family on Thursday, I took the decision to come and see for myself. I want to assure Mam Dlamini that as government, we will be assisting her and her children. To learn that all these children are not in school is very sad and I want to commit myself to making sure that all her children are placed in school and get the necessary counselling as the situation they are living in is disturbing emotionally and physically,” said MEC Mshengu.
Both the MEC and the councillor assured Mam Dlamini that within the next two weeks, her family will be placed in a house and will enjoy Christmas like every other family.