Zim hit-and-run victim denied treatment

JOHANNESBURG - Nqobile Maduma, a 24-year-old disabled Zimbabwean was hit and left for dead by a car near her refugee home in Braamfontein last week while attempting to cross the road.
“After the accident, the husband and wife, who were in a private car pretended to be willing to assist me a

ccess treatment but later on disappeared. I am sure they went into Berea. I don’t really know how to trace them,” said Nqobile, who sustained head and back injuries and lost three teeth.
Walking with the aid of crutches around the building where she is a refugee, Nqobile fears the prospect of being severely crippled for life or even death.
Under normal circumstances she could have reported the matter to South African Police Service (SAPS) and the driver of the vehicle punished.
But a distraught and ill young woman told CAJ news she could not do anything about the matter because she feared to get in trouble with the police. The thought of ending up in the notorious Lindela holding camp haunts her.
Despite this fear, Nqobile sought medical treatment at Hillbrow General Hospital.
“Hospital staff refused to attend to me, although they saw my serious injuries. They turned me down on the basis that I had no asylum papers.”
Nqobile applied for her asylum papers last month but up to now she has not received any joy from the Home Affairs Department.
Wits University academic and human rights activist, Simba Manyanya said the incident highlighted the crisis of South African policy on refugees and asylum seekers from Zimbabweans.
He said the refusal by medical authorities to attend to the woman with disabilities after she was involved in a’hit and run’ accident also portrayed overall policy postures that failed to resonate with fundamental global humanitarian principles.
“The incident itself shows that a South African Government whose priorities have little to do with human lives, and perhaps more to do with the continuance of the Zanu (PF) government in Harare,” said Manyanya.
Hospital staff, who received phone calls from CAJ News, were not prepared to let officials respond to the allegations, and efforts to get comment from the department of Home Affairs proved fruitless. – CAJ News
Anyone wishing to help Nqobile can send money via Bishop Paul Verryn, Central Methodist Church, Braamfontein

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