Abandoned blind grandad awaiting spiritual intervention
For the last 18 months, a blind 73-year-old man of Maunatla village has been left to fend for himself after his seven children and family members abandoned him.
Siamisang Mabuaaeme stays alone in a one room house in Palapye and relies on his good-natured neighbor and landlord Otshabile Motemane for his survival.
Motemane, who’s owed over a year’s rental, told The Voice in an exclusive interview this week that his unusual tenant was dropped off at his yard by his elder brother Joseph Mabuaaeme in April 2017.
“He introduced himself and promised that he’d be responsible for his brother’s upkeep and rental,” recalled Motemane.
“However, he vanished into thin air after about a week. He only came here twice to drop a loaf of bread for his blind brother. My wife and I were concerned and wondered how this old man was able to survive on bread alone.”
The kind-hearted Motemane said he later made a makeshift wire frame attached to the wall and leading to the pit latrine at the far end of his yard, which became handy for Mabuaaame whenever he needed to relieve himself.
“His family has abandoned him. His elder brother has told me he’s too busy with his cattle and asked me to get rid of the old man if I was tired of him,” said the worried Motemane.
A farmer who spends most of his time at the lands, Motemane said they now provide meals for their elderly tenant despite the fact he owes them 12 months worth of rent.
“Sometimes the old man goes up to a week without food if we’re not home.”
“None of his children want to listen to me. I sought help from the District Commissioner’s office and they advised me to evict him,” he said, pausing for less than a second before furiously adding, “How do I evict a blind man?”
The Voice then visited the old man in his rented room in the yard next door.
He immediately starts with a tirade against his family, accusing them of wanting to control his life ever since his sight deserted him.
“They treat me like a child. They just want to haul me back to Maunatlala against my wishes.
“Who’s going to care for me in the village, if they can’t care for me when they are with me right here in Palapye,” demanded the old man, whose anger does not mask his fear.
With tears in his faulty eyes, the father-of-seven revealed he lost his eyesight after retiring from BCL in 2013 and was abandoned by his wife who moved in with another man.
“I was sickly, my brother fetched me from Maunatlala in 2016 and brought me to Palapye. However my arrival was not welcomed by his wife and he dumped me here.”
The Zion Christian Church member said a prophesy from Bishop Barnabas Lekganyane instructed him not to return to Maunatlala until the ZCC Headquarters in Moria order otherwise.
“I’m not setting foot in Maunatla because I know I’ll die. I was told pastors have to perform a ritual before I can set foot in my yard back home. I’d rather head back to Moria,” he said, adding with a hint of desperation, “Only Lekganyane can help me.”
Reached for comment, his brother Joseph said he has given up on his sibling and can’t support him financially.
“We have a farm which belongs to our parents. I asked him to sell it and share the money so he could take care of himself but he’s refusing.
“I talked to his kids but no one has listened to me,” said Joseph, who according to Motemane has shown little regard for his brother since dumping him last year in April.
The Voice also reached out to the old man’s first born son, Ritchie Mabuaaeme who was quick to rubbish his uncle’s claims.
“I’m working with social workers and the District Commissioner. We hope to get a court order that we can use to get him back home. We can only take care of him when he’s in Maunatlala,” said the young Mabuaaeme.
He further said his father’s ZCC prophesy is not true.
“I went to church and inquired. I think the old man does not want to go back home, maybe he’s embarrassed or he wants to go back in a hearse,” he surmised without elaborating further.