We will not be moved, say blind evictees

2013-05-17 00:00

FOUR MECs yesterday visited the Ilovu Skills Development Centre near Amanzimtoti and gave it the thumbs-up as temporary accommodation for about 70 members of the KZN Society for the Blind.

But members of the society who are being offered the accommodation are not persuaded it is suitable.

They are refusing to move there, arguing that it is far away from the city, not user-friendly for the blind because some of them use crutches and wheelchairs, and there is no clinic nearby.

Yesterday, Social Development MEC Weziwe Thusi, Health MEC Sibongiseni Dhlomo, Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs MEC Nomusa Dube and Arts and Culture MEC Ntombikayise Sibhidla-Saphetha inspected the centre.

Social Development proposed the centre as temperorary shelter after members of the society were evicted from a block of flats in Durban, where they were being temporarily accommodated while their residence, Clarendon Home, was being renovated at a cost of R13 million.

They were evicted because the society could not afford the R88 000 monthly rental and the department has refused to foot the bill.

Said Thusi: “We offer this accommodation for free while the renovations are taking place at Clarendon Home.”

Thusi said the Health Department would provide a mobile clinic and the municipality would arrange disabled-friendly buses.

She said a meeting would be held with the members of the society. “We hope they will accept the offer because there is nowhere else they can go,” she said.

The society’s spokesperson, Bulelwa Mbolekwa, could not be reached for comment.

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