“My life is on standstill thanks to Home Affairs”

Two men born on the same day with the same name have the same ID number

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Photo of Luzuko Gijana
Luzuko Gijana holds his ID book. Someone else has the same ID number, name and birthday. (ID details intentionally blurred out.) Photo: Nombulelo Damba-Hendrik

Luzuko Gijana (27) from Cofimvaba Magwala Village near Queenstown recently found out that someone else was using his name, surname and identification number.

He said he went to Home Affairs in Cofimvaba, who confirmed that there was another Luzuko Gijana with the same date of birth and ID number. The other Luzuko Gijana lives in Libode just outside Mthatha.

Gijana said the officials at Home Affairs in Cofimvaba advised him to apply for another ID which he did last year July but it never came back. He said he went back again after two months but was again advised to apply for another ID.

Department of Home Affairs in Cofimvaba has called people to visit their offices to fix their duplication identification books. This comes after GroundUp sent a media inquiry regarding a Cofimvaba man who’s been waiting months for Home Affairs to fix his duplicate ID.

Gijana travels to Ceres in the Western Cape to do seasonal work on farms. “We get contracts from July until March the following year. I started working there in July 2014. Last year I went back. I did not get my first payment. I asked my bosses why I was the only one not paid. They showed me my payment on their system and asked me to contact my bank,” said Gijana

It was then that he discovered the problem. “When they checked they told me that the money was paid to the other Luzuko. This happened for a few months.” In fact Luzuko received a loan meant for his namesake. And his namesake received his wages. Luckily they managed to get in touch with each other by phone and transferred money between their accounts. This kind of confusion happened until the bank closed his account.

“At Capitec in Ceres they said there’s nothing they can do to help me. I must go to Home Affairs. I had to stop working because we were only allowed to use Capitec bank not other banks,” said Gijana looking down.

“My life is on standstill, thanks to Home Affairs. It’s been a year now waiting for Home Affairs to fix this problem, each time when I go to look for my ID, officials advised me to apply for another one,” he said.

“I did not finish school. My mother passed away while I was very young. In 2010 my father also passed away. I had an elder brother who used to look after me and my younger brother, but he is also no more. Now it is my duty to look after my sibling but it is hard. I cannot find a decent job because I did not finish school. On farms at least there are no qualifications needed,” said Gijana.

Home Affairs Eastern Cape Provincial Manager Mziyanda Maki said Gijana’s application is still in progress. He said it was referred to the Duplicate section on the day GroundUp sent a media inquiry to the department.

“The system shows that it was last attended to in May 2016 at Head Office,” he said.

Maki said each week they receive many duplicate cases at their offices.

TOPICS:  Home Affairs

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