AmaZulu King, donors give food aid relief
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DURBAN - ZULU King Misuzulu has partnered with the private sector to alleviate poverty and provide support for destitute people living in Nongoma.
On Sunday, R3 million worth of food parcels were delivered to 2 500 families in Nongoma. The value of each food pack was R1 200, which the king said would be groceries to last a month.
This was during the king’s launch of the first community support programme, at KwaKhangelamankengane Royal Palace.
“Many in the community are facing abject poverty due to the economic devastation brought about by Covid19, which has now been exacerbated due to the recent spate of destruction and looting in KwaZulu-Natal,” the king said.
He thanked all those who had contributed in making the initiative a success. “I will work closely with my queen KaMayisela in fulfilling community support projects. I hope that you continue to give her support,” he said.
He said that not long ago he had cautioned the people against looting and vandalism of infrastructure, because the effects of these acts would be severe on the poor.
“As we are gathered here, Nongoma town has been destroyed. More than 100 shops were completely destroyed, and all the jobs provided by these shops have been lost,” he said.
The king met the Nongoma mayor, izinduna, and business people last week.
He said, while the destruction could not be reversed, something could still be done in forging a path forward.
“I realised that I cannot fold my arms and let people die of hunger. I urge more people to come forward and assist the hardest-hit areas,” he stated.
The king said he intended expanding this project to other areas as well.
He thanked those who defended their towns such as Ulundi, Pongola, Vryheid and other areas.
“I want to raise a point on what is happening in Phoenix, where criminal elements are disguised as defenders of their town. These are ruthless criminal acts, and my desire is for the law to take its course – without fear or favour. I will not allow criminals to create racial tensions,” the king said.
Shoprite spokesperson Helen Namponya said they were honoured to work with the king and hoped this would not be the last time that they had this privilege. “The king placed a call and declared a need for his people. To us, this is our way of giving back to the community. We also have soup trucks serving people in KZN and Gauteng.”
Namponya added that the extra R5 donation which customers make at tills, will be ploughed back as relief measures for the affected provinces.
Gershon Naidoo, of Meals on Wheels, thanked the king for allowing them to assist with food. “We thank the king for prioritising his people in his first few weeks of reigning as king. This shows he cares about his people.”
Meals on Wheels, in partnership with Shoprite, donated 1 000 food parcels. Azola Mayekiso, of Ubuntu, said they approached the king and offered to help. “Ubuntu ladies wanted assistance with identifying the destitute,” Mayekiso said.
Ubuntu donated 320 food parcels.
Other donors chose to remain anonymous.