‘Witness’ and Mndeni Meats step in to save Christmas

2012-12-19 00:00

ON Monday, residents of kwaMpumuza township were in despair after the meat they had planned to eat during their Christmas celebrations went rotten during a power failure that lasted three days.

Yesterday, however, there were smiles on some of their faces after The Witness intervened and Mndeni Meats came to the rescue.

The butchery chain donated 850 kg of meat, which was distributed to some of the affected households. And with the power in the area restored, the residents are looking forward to a happy Christmas.

KwaMpumuza residents protested outside the head office of the Msunduzi Municipality electricity department in Havelock Road on Monday afternoon. They dumped rotten, maggot-infested fish, braai packs and chicken at the main entrance to show their displeasure.

Yesterday they were smiling and ululating when Mndeni Meats offered meat to more than 25 affected families.

“Our Christmas spirit was dampened by the power outages. We thought this was going to be a dull festive season because we had already spent our money buying food.

“We were very angry and did not know where we would get money to buy more meat,” said Bongiwe Mlotshwa.

She said their tears were dried by Mndeni Meats’ generous surprise donation.

“We are grateful that Mndeni Meats shared our pain and decided to lend a helping hand.”

Community activist Mdu Zuma said they did not expect any help and were pleasantly surprised that their Christmas food woes had been addressed.

Zuma said they met municipal officials to discuss their problems yesterday. Electricity was restored to the area at 3 am yesterday.

Mark Lederle, a partner at Mndeni Meats, said: “We will always give back to the community. We feel it is important to help those less privileged than ourselves, whether it be the poor, aged, disabled, terminally ill or animal welfare groups …”

He said Mndeni Meats in Pietermaritzburg had helped more than 40 organisations and groups with donations in cash and kind in the past year.

“Today’s helping hand for those families that were affected by last week’s storm damage and the resultant interruption in the power supply should help them have a happier Christmas,” said Lederle.

Acting municipal spokesperson Nqobile Madonda said the kwaMpumuza power problem was being rectified by laying a bigger cable in the area.

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