South Africa: Activist Anna Motase Did Not Have to Die Without Dignity

opinion

It is a disgrace that indigent patients are left to die without assistance for their stressed families - or a government-supported hospice to provide some dignity in their last days.

This year, the DA buried activist Anna Motase after she died from Aids-related complications at Tembisa Hospital. She leaves two sons, aged 17 and nine. She also has a brother, Steven. Anna had an RDP home she shared with her children, while her brother stayed in the back room. Steven does not have a full-time job and the children don't get any grant money.

During her illness, her brother was her sole caregiver and when he got part-time jobs her kids became her carers after school. The children had to watch as their mother faded away, an experience no child should be put through.

I visited Anna and, afterwards, as I got into my car to drive home, I found myself in tears because she was alive but looked ravaged.

People in the area passing by would cross the road rather than walk directly in front of the house - a testament to the stigma still prevalent in our communities about HIV-Aids.

Steven got very little support from neighbours during...

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