Overjoyed ‘deceased’ dad gets ID after nearly 10-year battle
Cape Town – Overjoyed Khayelitsha resident Siyabonga Zingeni could not contain his emotions after he was classified “alive” again by Home Affairs following a nearly decade-long struggle.
The 37-year-old father said since 2011 he had been classified as “deceased” when work recruiters looked into his background, making it impossible for him to provide for his family.
He recalled how he was abruptly fired at work in 2011 because of a problem with his ID.
Following a story in the Cape Times, Zingeni said he received a call from Home Affairs informing him that his ID had been “fixed”.
“I then went to the bank to check again and finally I was told my ID was working. I have been sitting waiting for this moment, for this change in my life and I am very happy that it finally happened. Now I can start a new chapter and I can start to look for work. After years, I managed to even get a bank card. For this happiness I have now, I am even able to sleep peacefully at night,” he said.
Zingeni added that he was now focused on getting a job to provide for his family and his grandmother who raised him.
“At least now that I have an ID, even if someone would say there's a job opportunity I will be able to go and try. I will also be able to look into things like a housing subsidy. I am happy and ready for a new life,” he said.
His wife, Sindiswa Mfolozi, said they were told at Home Affairs that Zingeni's ID number was mistakenly switched with someone else's.
“We went to Home Affairs after the calls, and Home Affairs said the ID was fixed on January 18. When we asked what happened, they said he was using a similar ID number of somebody else, that's why he appeared as deceased. But now everything is fine. His ID even works at the bank. We are very thankful,” she said.
Community activist Anele Gabuza said this was the beginning of a new journey for the Zingeni family.
“Now the father can register to vote in the upcoming 2021 elections. He will be able to look for a job and also he is going to be able to apply for a housing subsidy as a resident of this country.
“I would like those who are facing this challenge to come forward so that their problems with their IDs can be sorted out like this one,” Gabuza said.