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Elderly, veterans cry for unpaid benefits

TSAONE BASIMANEBOTLHE
Elderly, veterans cry for unpaid benefits
While it is difficult for individuals to support their families due to COVID-19 lockdown, the elderly, disabled and World War II veterans in Lobatse and Southern district have not been paid their allowances for the past two months.

The situation is worsened by the fact that they cannot even get support from family members as most people were paid half salaries over the past three months, sources say.

“We have not been paid for two months and there is no one who is willing to give us information about the payment on whether the government has stopped paying us or not.

One of the officers at the Post office told us that the government has changed the company thrown which we have been paying monthly. It is painful because our children cannot afford to take care of us they are not getting their fully salaries,” an elderly Ogopotse Kewelang said in an interview.

Another elderly person, Ketshepheone Nthomelang also complained that he had not been paid for two months and they were being told to keep on checking if the money was ready or not.

“Ke belaela go nale mathata mme ga gona ope yo o batlang go bua gore go diragala eng. Re batho ba batona re ka tlhaloganya ha re ka bolelelwa nnete. Gare na maoto a go thola re ile go botsa molaodi kana batho ba poso gore re amogela leng. Bana le bone ba lela ka kgang tsa kamogedi,” Nthomelang complained in vernacular about

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the fact that being of age, and hence being inform, they had no reserved strength to be inundating post offices, only to be turned back empty-handed.

Southern District commissioner, Mmoloki Raletobana confirmed that some elderly people went to his office complaining that they have not been paid for two months.

“I am trying to find out what could be the problem and information I have is that they will get paid end of this week. It is true that some of them had told me that they had not been paid in May and June. I am following their issue with Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development and I am hopeful that the issue would be addressed  expeditiously,” he said in an interview.

Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development spokesperson, Masego Ramakgathi had promised this newspaper that the elderly  would be paid by the end of this month, but that did not happen.

“I understand some of them have been paid. We are not aware that they did not get their May salary unless there are few individuals who have not been paid. My Ministry will enquire with relevant authorities on what could have happened if it is true to cause the delay,” Ramakgathi said.



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