Gogo Nkosi gets her dream home at last

After waiting all her life, 107-year-old Liesbet Nkosi will now sleep in a house she can proudly call her own - and so will her 81-year-old daughter.

In a ceremony on Wednesday, the great-great-grandmother and her daughter were handed the keys to their two new houses at Chief Luthuli Park in Benoni.

Nkosi had been living in a shack all her life and depending solely on her pension grant for survival. She had little idea that when she told community development worker Million Zitha her greatest desire, he would make it come true.

Zitha met Nkosi in 2006 and heard her complaints about never having had a house or a toilet that flushed. He took her complaint to the department of housing in Ekhurhuleni and was there on Wednesday to hand Nkosi the keys.

The brown one-bedroom house is like a palace to the pensioner in the bright pink hat. She sits in a wheelchair which Zitha helped to organise. Right next door is an identical house built for her daughter Maria Ntombikayise Meko for the family to stay together.

"I'm so happy," said Meko as her mother could not speak to the media. "It's been Gogo's dream to have a house."

The Gauteng MEC for Local Government, Qedani Dorothy Mahlangu, handed over the keys to the two houses and congratulate Zitha on his hard work for senior citizens.

"The government has had challenges reaching people in communities but with community development workers who are going to people's homes to find out what they need, we are beginning to turn the tide, We hope to see more positive stories like this one today."

The man who started it all was standing humbly watching all that happened.

"Today I'm happy," Zitha said.

"I'm feeling good. It means if people complain and you make a promise to deliver it can happen."

  • This article was originally published on page 3 of The Star on May 17, 2007

Article by: Angelique Serrao