Another death at controversial old age home

2014-11-02 13:41


Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Cape Town - Another resident from the Serendipity Old Age Home in Cape Town has died - the sixth in one month - bringing the total number of deaths in five months to 16, the Sunday Times reports.

Serendipity, owned by Sharon Roberts, made headlines last week amid claims that residents are neglected, drugged to keep them quiet and fed food past the expiry date.

The newspaper reports that there was a debate on Seredipity in legislature last week and that the Western Cape department of social development has vowed to bring criminal charges against Roberts should a probe into the unregistered home find evidence of wrongdoing.

In addition, Social Development MEC Albert Fritz said he was considering introducing an inspectorate to investigate old-age homes and abuse of the elderly.


News24 reported last week that a caregiver, a former cleaner and the daughter of a resident spoke out and said that wounds of residents were left untreated, that bedsores and scabies were common and that residents were drugged or locked in the bathroom to keep them quiet.

In one incident, a staff member was ordered to use old food that had been put down for the dog and serve it to residents.

This comes after the Democratic Alliance warned last year that several old age homes in the country were in need of repair and maintenance.

DA spokesperson Mike Waters said at the time that some of the facilities could be regarded as health and safety hazards in their present state.

"We call on the [social development] department to determine whether there is any rollover of funds in its annual budget that can be reallocated to the maintenance and repair of these facilities," he said.

Waters said if not, the department should call on the finance minister to allocate other funds to help the elderly.

He said he had written to the Human Rights Commission to investigate whether the rights of the elderly were not being violated.

"The department must ensure that it budgets sufficient funds to ensure that all old age homes are in an excellent condition and that the health and lives of the elderly are not at risk," said Waters.

Read more on:    hrc  |  cape town

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Financial advisors – Do you need one and should you get one?

The good, the bad, and everything else you need to know when considering hiring a financial advisor.


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.