Covid-19 relief vouchers rejected

Covid-19 relief vouchers rejected

MASERU-BASOTHO in South Africa are stranded after the Covid-19 food relief vouchers from the Lesotho government were rejected.
The vouchers worth M350 each were given to 12 000 Basotho to buy food during the Covid-19 crisis.

But when they presented them to Shoprite supermarket the beneficiaries were told that they were not valid, leaving them starving for days as they waited for the problem to be solved.
They had been waiting for those vouchers for several months after the South African government side-lined them to feed its own people.

The president of the Free Basotho Movement, Dr Letsema Morolong, said Basotho received messages to collect their food vouchers from Shoprite.
“But they were stunned when their vouchers were not valid,” Dr Morolong said.
Dr Morolong said new vouchers were sent but he could not verify, at the time of going to print, if they were being accepted.

He said they informed the deputy principal secretary at the Ministry of Social Development, Mahlapane Makakole-Boliba.
Last night Makakole-Boliba said there was “a technical problem on Shoprite’s side but that has now been solved”.
“People are now getting their food parcels without any problems,” Makakole-Boliba said.

Dr Morolong said although they are grateful for the aid it had come a little late and there are still thousands of Basotho struggling in South Africa.
He said his association registered about 30 000 people who urgently needed assistance.

Dr Morolong said almost every Mosotho in South Africa is struggling because they are not working due to the pandemic.
The government earlier said it had to verify if the people requesting aid were Basotho. But while that verification was happening Basotho were struggling.
The government set aside M4 million for the relief.

Staff Reporter

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