Businessman donates food parcels to needy

Agnes Gxukuma (middle), Nomhle Ntoyi and Nqobakazi Xesi were excited to receive food parcels from Clinton Pentiah, store manager, and Mahad Omar Abdi store manager.

Businesses across the country have heeded President Cyril Ramaphosa’s call for them to step in and provide much needed help to vulnerable communities during the national lockdown.

With the president extending the lockdown by two more weeks, many households are struggling to put food on the table.

Mahad Omar Abdi, who runs a supermarket at Thembani shopping centre near Site C, opted to donate food parcels, which contained flour, maize meal, meat, fish, samp and other basic food items, to close to 50 families.

He said he also consulted other businesses in the area to assist in whatever way they could and they donated some cash to buy the food.

Mr Abdi said many people were unemployed, relied on piecemeal jobs or had been operating informal businesses and are unable to afford basic food items during the lockdown.

He wanted to make it a bit easier for them at this time.

Mr Abdi has been running his business in the area for years and says the community has rallied behind him to make it what it is today so he wanted to return the massive support he has been receiving.

He said he wished he could do more than this but this was all he could afford.

“I understand the impact of this coronavirus on many households.

“For a week or two these families will have food on the table and that is important,” he said.

He urged other local businesses to give back because the reason their businesses are thriving was because of support from the community. “We must all play our part as the president said,” said Mr Abdi.

One of the beneficiaries, Ben Zide, expressed his sincere gratitude on behalf of the beneficiaries, saying that the donation would go a long way and it means that their families won’t go hungry.

Community leader Nolubabalo Mtshalala said they were beaming with smiles and gratitude for what Mr Abdi has done for their community.

Ms Mtshalala said people have this wrong perception that people living in their community do not need help and are well off. She said it was good to see businesses that operate in the township giving back to the community.

Another community leader, Neliswa Bovana, applauded the businesses which were helping families that did not have much.

She urged others to do the same and continue helping the needy people.