Help fund identity documents

2017-10-31 06:01
Flamingo residents wants assistance with ID books to help them find jobs. PHOTOS: AISHAH CASSIEM

Flamingo residents wants assistance with ID books to help them find jobs. PHOTOS: AISHAH CASSIEM

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Flamingo Informal Settlement residents are asking for assistance from their ward councillor after more than 50 residents were found to not have ID documents as a result of loss to a shack fire or lack of funds.

A recent fire had left another family without ID books, which residents say affect their work opportunities.

“I can’t find a decent job because I have no ID. Our place burnt down four years ago and we lost most of our belongings. It has been hard finding employment since because we do not have any [form of] identity. It will cost us R140 to have [a new ID made]. We can’t even afford food, how will we afford an ID?” says a resident.

The residents say they have asked the councillor for assistance, and have “been promised assistance”.

Ward councillor Mark Kleinschmidt says: “The residents visit my Lansdowne Civic Centre office daily for a myriad of issues including the application for IDs – 50 of them, and thereafter to be included on the jobseekers database managed by subcouncil 17.

“The waiting period for IDs is normally two weeks, obtained via Wynberg Home Affairs.”

Kleinschmidt says funds will have to be raised to provide financial assistance.

“The IDs are necessary to obtain the jobs and we’ve just submitted 24 names of Flamingo heights residents for a road construction and rehabilitation contract.

“However, a ward allocations does not provide financial assistance for this kind of expenditure. I appeal to businesses, the private sector and other sources to provide financial assistance in the form of donations.”

An official from Lansdowne Police Station who works with the settlement residents says they are ready to assist.

“We are ready to take these people from Flamingo to Home Affairs any time, and can group them in 20s at a time to transport them with our cars. The only issue here is money. The Department (of Home Affairs) wants their money before giving IDs to these needy people,” she says.

“We have managed to collect everyone’s details thus far, and are in the process of finding more residents in the settlement with no identity [documents]. It is very important for them to have these booklets in order to find jobs or to make application for grants.”

Meanwhile retired police captain Keith Blake, who is assisting police in finding ways to fundraise money for the settlers ID books, is calling local businesses in the area to open their pockets in support of the needy.

“Some of the children also have no identity documents. These nameless people are the poor of the poor and some who are eligible for Sassa benefits cannot apply due to their nameless status. “Apparently, Khayelitsha Home Affairs can assist but the grownups have to each pay R140 to the department. This is where the wheels fell off the cart. No one has this money so they are back to being nameless [and] voteless. “Surely there can be some help from the Lansdowne community and let our dedicated [officers] from the police station complete the noble mission in assisting these people.”

V If you would like to assist a resident from Flamingo informal settlement by paying for an identity booklet call Keith Blake on 073 877 6207.

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