No food, no family, no hope

2018-12-28 06:00

Xolile Ngxanu has hollow cheeks, long hideous hair and lifeless skin that all speak to his miserable living conditions.

The 45-year-old man from a Shayamoya township lives in a run-down RDP house in Payless Street and has no job and no money to buy food.

He has been living in extreme poverty without hope for many years and now faces a grim festive season.

As most people prepare to spend their money on different kinds of delicious food, celebrating Christmas with their families, Ngxanu has nothing to celebrate.

“As you can see, life is difficult for me, I live like an animal, but there is nothing much I can do about my situation,” said Ngxanu.

“I don’t know what I’m going to eat. Even today, I have not eaten anything since this morning. I have only water in my room,” said Ngxanu to the Fever after we visited him in his RDP house last Sunday afternoon.

Ngxanu lives alone and feels hopeless in life, at times going to bed without food. He said even neighbours are tired of him begging for a plate of food.

“I am surviving by collecting and selling empty bottles of beer in town. Each empty bottle of beer costs R50c, but sometimes I used to search for empty bottles of beer for the whole day in vain,” said Ngxanu.

He said what made matters worse for him was that the Greater Kokstad Municipality disconnected his electricity in 2014 because he had a debt of R8 000.

He said he uses candles and matches to light up his room, but sometimes he cannot even afford to buy a box of matches and a candle.

“When I don’t have matches and a candle, I sleep early so that I will able to see my blanket. As a result of my bad living conditions, I ended up being hit by a vehicle twice because every time I walk in the streets of Kokstad I think about my poor living conditions,” said Ngxanu

Inside his RDP house, it is the epitome of poverty, and he has no bed to sleep on. He has collected old wood and built a contraption on which to sleep.

Ngxanu said two months ago, members of the South African Security Agency helped him by handing over a voucher of R1 500.

“I bought two gas stoves, clothes and food, but today I have got nothing to eat,” said Ngxanu.

“I don’t feel any freedom when I am this poor, nothing changes for me here, instead life has gone from bad to worse.

“I am living in this depilated RDP house and when it rains, the rain comes through holes at the top,” said Ngxanu.

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