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PICS: SANDF distributes humanitarian aid, lends a helping hand to KZN flood victims

Members of the SANDF carry their donations to the floods victims in Mzinyathi outside Durban. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

Members of the SANDF carry their donations to the floods victims in Mzinyathi outside Durban. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

Published Jun 8, 2022

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Durban - In the aftermath of the natural disasters that affected scores of KwaZulu-Natal residents and their surroundings, the SANDF distributed humanitarian aid and lent a helping hand to the flood victims.

They visited uMzinyathi area, Ngqokazi Community Centre and Amoti Community Centre on Tuesday to hand out their donations, with the help of the SANDF Spouses Forum, Armscor, the People’s Liberation Army in China and the soldiers themselves, who gave money from their own pockets and also donated clothes.

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Chief Maphwanya hand over the SANDF donation to the floods victims in Mzinyathi outside Durban. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

The gesture was one of solidarity and social partnership with the national and provincial government-led interventions that were already taking place in the province.

Chief General Rudzani Maphwanya said that the force is for the people and by the people, so it is fitting that they are reaching out to the people.

Members of the SANDF carry their donation to the floods victims in Mzinyathi outside Durban. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

“We acknowledged the help that the people have been receiving and we also decided to help the people in distress. As the defence force, we cannot fathom the pain that the people are going through, we cannot wipe their tears but we promise to be there for them at all times.

“I urge that we do more as people in this country, we need to do crowdfunding, and put together non-perishables for the people as our mission is to offer assistance for the families until they reach normality and to ensure that those affected do not walk alone, I ask that more people join this cause.”

SANDF donation to the floods victims in uMzinyathi outside Durban. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

Not only were the soldiers serving the nation by building bridges, and ensuring that communities have clean water but they were going out of their way to help the communities from their own pockets since some are also from the affected areas, he said.

Foodstuffs, clothing, stationery, and essential hygiene products were distributed in uMzinyathi where they visited the Mdlalose family who lost 10 family members during the floods, and are now looking for one person they presume was lost during the floods.

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Among the families who received donations were the Gumbis, who lost three family members and were still searching for them.

Chief Maphwanya hand over the SANDF donation to the floods victims in Mzinyathi outside Durban. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya/African News Agency (ANA)

Another family was the Ntuli family who lost a 2-year-old. Busisiwe Ntuli said the SANDF had been hands-on with the search for her 2-year-old granddaughter.

“I am speechless as to how far their kindness extends, this is amazing. It gives us strength knowing that we are looked after and we have never slept hungry, we are grateful for everything,” said Ntuli.

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CEO of Armscor, which is one of the stakeholders, Solomzi Mbada, said they did not think twice to lend a helping hand and they were involved in a number of initiatives.

“As an acquisition agency of the SANDF, we were touched by the stories and decided to join forces to help.”

Chairperson of the SANDF Spouses forum General Masindi Maphwanya, Major General Portia More, Chief General Rudzani Maphwanya, Chaplain Thabo Masweu and CEO Advocate Solomzi Mbada, during a media briefing held by the Chief General regarding the donations from the SANDF to the flood victims in various areas around Durban that were greatly affected. Picture: Tumi Pakkies/African News Agency(ANA)

Spouse’s Forum chairperson, Masindi Maphwanya, said it was an honour to be part of the initiative; making a difference meant a lot to them and they were always willing to go the extra mile to help.

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