Social Development MEC hands over food parcels and furniture to victim’s family


Eastern Cape MEC of Social Development, Nancy Sihlwayi, on 27 August handed over grocery parcels and beddings to a family, who lost their belongings and home to gender-based violence last year in Hankey, in the Kouga Local municipality.

The handover was attended by officials from various government departments including Social Development, Justice, Health and SAPS, as well as the Sarah Baartman District Municipality’s Portfolio Councillor, Noel O’Connel; Kouga Local Municipality Mayor, Daphne Kettledas; Department of Social

Development District Manager Zandisile Tafeni and local ward councillors.

The victims, Claudia Antonie and her six-year old nephew, died last year in August after Claudia was gang-raped and their house was set alight by a group of seven men, who were later arrested by police within 24 hours of the incident.

“When this terrible incident happened last year, the family felt excluded by the government of the democratic South Africa, they lost hope and confidence.

“We are gathered here today as the government to respond to the cries of the Antonie family. We are here to give them hope and restore their dignity,” said MEC Sihlwayi.

She said furniture for the family had been delayed in Port Elizabeth but would be delivered.

The Department of Human Settlements also committed itself to have a house ready for the family before the end of the year.

“It is our endeavour to come and respond when there are cries from the people of our country,” MEC Sihlwayi added.

Speaking at the event, Mayor Kettledas commended the Antonie family for attending the event even though they were going through a difficult time.

“We cannot really make things easy for the loss that the family has suffered, but as the government we hope to ease the burden that the family is carrying,” she said.

At the same event, food parcels were handed over to 20 destitute families identified by the local municipality.

Since the handover happened during Women’s Month, MEC Sihlwayi also urged the victims to speak up and take a stand against gender-based violence.