WARNING GRAPHIC IMAGE BELOW
Durban - Good Samaritans have started initiatives to assist Selina Kokolosi with her medical bills after she was mauled by three pit bull terriers.
Kokolosi lost her nose, lip and ears, and her legs and hands were savaged.
Members of the public came forward after the heartbreaking story was published in the Daily News on Monday.
The 47-year-old grandmother, whose body has been completely reconfigured, spent weeks in intensive care after she was taken from Potchefstroom to Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital in Johannesburg, where doctors saved her life.
Kokolosi worked as a domestic helper at the home of Chandré van der Linde and Marno Moster, whose dogs were loose on the day of the incident. The dogs were taken away after the incident and put down.
Johannesburg plastic and reconstructive surgeon Bruce Lelala offered to assist Kokolosi in her recovery process and invited her to his Hyde Park practice.
“The first step will be for me to see and assess her so I can determine exactly what I can offer for her reconstruction, and will have an idea of how long the operations will take.
“From what I have seen in the pictures, she will need at least three operations, minimum.”
Lelala said he had reached out to some of his colleagues at a private hospital to join the calls to assist Kokolosi.
“I will meet up with a colleague next week and map out the clinical plan. I will also reach out to my medical suppliers for assistance,” he said.
Lelala urged South Africans to join hands and help Kokolosi put her life back together.
Kokolosi’s nephew, Tebogo Kokolosi, confirmed to the Daily News on Thursday that they had received an invitation for a medical consultation from Lelala to assess and determine the process needed for the reconstructive surgical process.
“We are grateful as a family that our prayers for any help since the incident happened are bearing fruit,” said Tebogo Kokolosi.
“I thank the Daily News for having ensured that my aunt’s story is heard.
“As we wait for justice to prevail, we have hope that she will get the necessary assistance from the public,” he said.
In an earlier interview, Kokolosi cried as she told the publication of the attack. She said the worst part was that her grandchildren did not recognise her any more and feared her.
“I may have survived death but, sadly, I now have to live with the fact that I am not the person my grandchildren knew. They fear being around me. They cry when they see me because they do not believe that I am their grandmother.
“My life has been destroyed … I do not believe anyone would want to employ me as a domestic worker because they will be scared of how I look.
“All I want is justice for what happened to me. My former employer never showed any remorse. They did not even call or come to visit me in the hospital.”
The Daily News urges all South Africans to step in and join forces with those willing to assist Kokolosi through her recovery process.