A video of a woman assaulting her elderly mother in 2021 resurfaced on social media this week, which prompted the KwaZulu Natal Social Development Department to ask people to refrain from sharing it.
In a statement, the department urged people to respect the dignity of the victim.
The 24-second video resurfaced this week and has been widely shared across various social media platforms.
However, the video is from 2021.
It shows a young woman suffocating an elderly individual while demanding her grant money.
MEC of KZN Social Development, Nonhlanhla Khoza expressed her deep concern over the recirculation of this video, describing it as distasteful and distressing.
"This distressing video depicts the assault of a pensioner by her daughter in a demand for her grant money.
"We would like to clarify that this video is not a recent incident. The incident happened in Ladysmith, uThukela District in 2021.
"It is important to respect the privacy and dignity of individuals in sensitive situations and to verify the authenticity and context of any content before sharing it on social media or other platforms," she said.
Khoza said prompt action was taken in response to this incident in 2021.
"When the incident came to our attention, we acted swiftly and in collaboration with the South African Police Service (SAPS). A case was officially opened with SAPS and an investigation was initiated immediately,” she said.
Khoza said that despite extensive efforts, the perpetrator remained at large.
"A warrant of arrest was issued for her, and every possible avenue was explored to apprehend her.
"She was reportedly last seen in Johannesburg, specifically in Soweto, and a thorough search was conducted in that area, but unfortunately, no positive results were obtained," she said.
Khoza said the grandmother was provided with psychosocial support.
"Elder abuse is a grave concern, and we continue to work tirelessly to address and prevent such incidents from occurring," she said.
Khoza urged members of the public to report any information regarding the whereabouts of the perpetrator to their local SAPS station.