Disabled sisters get help from mayor

The joyful Jali family were glad that their two disabled daughters received wheelchairs that would make their lives a little bit easier.

Life will never be the same for the two disabled sisters Nomahlontlo, 32, and Nokuthula, 27, Jali since they gained their independence last week, thanks to new wheelchairs and walking sticks donated to them by the office of mayor Patricia de Lille.

The sisters live with their parents and 12 siblings, and other relatives at Philippi.

Nokuthula was born disabled while Nomahlontlo got sick in her teens and eventually became disabled.

Both sisters battle to walk properly and rely on their relatives to help them get around.

But on Thursday April 5, things changed for the better when they were given wheelchairs.

Their mother, Nomphike Jali, said it was extremely difficult for her daughters when they had to go to the toilet because they needed to be assisted.

But, she said, it was not only her two daughters that were disabled in the house – her two nieces and her young brother were also mentally disabled.

She said it had been a difficult to look after disabled people, particularly when they did not have a decent place to live.

The 68-year-old mother of four said her daughter Nokuthula had lost all her teeth when she fell and landed against a heavy object.

She had been on her way to an outside toilet but because she could not walk properly, she slipped and fell.

Ms Jali said when her daughters walk around the yard they need to be monitored or helped.

Ms Jali said it was a nightmare for her daughters when they had to travel long distances and their lack of independence frustrated them.

Ms Jali said she is grateful that her daughters received the walking aids and wheelchairs because they would make their lives a little bit easier.

“My only wish now is to get a decent house. The space here is too small for them to move around. I fear that if a fire broke out we would not be able to save my children,” she said.

DA proportional representative councillor Thulani Stemele said the plight of the family had been brought to his attention when when was conducting door-to-door visits in the area.

Seeing their situation, said Mr Stemele, he immediately realised that something needed to be done.

He said he would continue supporting the family in whatever way he could and had made a commitment to help them get their house completed.