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Letters from our readers 1985 No 2

Dear Learn and Teach I have a problem. My problem is this. Last year in November, I lost my job. They said there was no more work. I asked for my U.I.F. card. Then I registered as unemployed. I thought that I would wait for three weeks to get my money. But I have signed for three weeks already. Still I have got no money. Please tell me what I can do. Sextus Kgomojoo SEBOKENG

Thanks for your letter. We spoke to someone at the U.I.F. They said it can be six or eight weeks before you get your money. But you must sign every week. If you miss a week, you must register again. And then your wait begins again. It can change the money that you get. If you do not get money after two months, write to us again. Then you must send us your reference number. You must also send the name and address of the office where you sign. -editor

Dear Learn and Teach I am writing for the Trichardtsdal student organisation. We are an organisation for high school students and university students in the Eastern Transvaal. We want to organise a winter school for Std. 10 students. We want our winter school to help them with their examinations. We want you to help us plan the winter school. We want you to tell us what you know about schooling. M. Mogale MEDUNSA

Thank you for your letter. The people who can help you with your winter school are the Educa­tion Support Project (E.S.P.). Their address is: Dunwell House, 35 Jorissen Street, Braamfontein, 2001. or phone Nicky at 339-1045. We do not work with school students. Learn and Teach has schools for grown-ups. If you want to know more about Learn and Teach classes, write and tell us. Also, if you want to use the magazine at the winter school, let us know. -editor

Dear Learn and Teach When you come into our hostel, you will think it is a place for pigs — not people. In the morning we have no time to clean it. We leave for work at 4.30 a.m. We also also must stand in line to wash. There are only two basins and one shower for 25 people. That is bad but other people also use them. People who ‘diza the blackjacks’ (pay money to the W.R.A.B. officers) also use them. If something breaks, they do not fix it. There is no-one to listen to us, only the superintendent. And he only wants money at the end of the month. Hostel Dweller THEMBISA

Thanks for your letter. Things sound very bad at your hostel. People can get sick from living like you do. Speak to the other people in the hostel. Try to make the superintendant listen to you and fix things. If your firm pays for the hostel, complain at work. If you belong to a union, speak to them, too. The people who ‘diza the blackjacks’ are a problem but like everyone, they also need a place to stay. They cannot help it that their reference books don’t have the right stamp. -editor

Dear Learn and Teach Please help me. I am a young man. I am 24 years old. I have a wife and two children. My problem is that I have no work. I worked for six months. Then they said the work was finished. My second problem is at home. I have no parents. I live with another family. Now that I have no work, they do not like me. I am still paying lobola. But I haven’t got any money. My wife is also going to have a baby. Please help me. S.T.S. SEBOKENG

We are very sorry to hear your problems. Thanks for your letter. But we cannot help you ourselves. We can give you places to try for help. Speak to your priest. If you don’t have a priest speak to the social welfare workers. Otherwise the Society of Friends (or the Quakers) can help. But they are at 7317 (a), Zone 4 , Diepkloof or 4th Floor, Merlen House, 49 Simmonds Street, Johannesburg. Their phone number is (011) 402-7752. They will understand because there are many people with no work. Good luck. -editor

Dear Learn and Teach Please send me Learn and Teach. I will send you stories. I have a problem I worked on the mines from 1948 to 1976. But the Chamber of Mines do not pay me a pension. I am 54 years old and I have a passport. Things are hard at home with no money. Manfred Nxumalo MANZINI, SWAZILAND

Thanks for your letter. We spoke to the Chamber of Mines. They say they only pay pension if you gave money to the pension fund. You must also be 65 years old to get a pension. If you want to know more, you must send us one of your old payslips. Or you must tell us.-

  1. the name and address of the mine where you worked,

  2. your company/clock number,

  3. the work you did. Then we can find out more from the Chamber of Mines for you. – editor

Dear Learn and Teach Please send me your book called ‘Accidents and Sickness at work’. I also want to tell you a story. There is an old man called Johannes Mokhathi. He started to work at Gordon Bennett Painters in 1957. He was a painter. Nonsense started there in April last year. A young white supervisor fired the old man. He had no reason. When people asked him, he said “Die kaffir is klaar oud.” (The black man is already old). But he doesn’t want to give his pension to him — and he refuses to fill in the U.I.F. forms. He wrote number 3 on the old man’s U.I.F. cards. So the old man has no money at all. I don’t know how they think he and his family must live. A. Malindi CARLETONVILLE

Thanks for your letter. It is good to help friends. We can help you if you send us:

  1. the address of Gordon Bennett,

  2. an old payslip of Johannes,

  3. did they take money from Johannes for pensionJohannes must go and register for U.I.F. If he registered and they did not pay him he must tell us:-

  4. when he registered,

  5. if he signed every time,

  6. his reference number. Then we can write to them. We will ask them why they are so slow. -editor

Dear Learn and Teach Please help me. I want to know about vegetable shops and customers. A person buys something say, a pumpkin. They go home and see that the pumpkin is rotten. Is it right if they take it back to the shop? What must the shop owner do? I want to know what you think? This is a problem we have in Delmas. I have a shop. I also have lots of problems like this with the customers. Emily Nkabinde DELMAS

Thanks for your letter. It is hard for us to say what is right and wrong. Customers do have rights. We think a customer can bring back rotten fruit and vegetables. But they cannot bring it back after many days or months. You must try to keep fresh stuff. We hope you sort out your problem.-editor

Dear Learn and Teach I want you to help us. We have a very big problem. My sister’s husband had a life insurance policy. It was with Old Mutual. When he died, we told Old Mutual. They said they needed his policy document. But we cannot find it. So Old Mutual said we must forget about it – they will not give us the money without the policy document. What can we do? J.Z.Dlamini ERMELO

Thank you for your letter. We are sorry to hear about your sister’s husband. The people at Old Mutual made a mistake. They also have a copy of the policy document. And your sister can get it. But first she must go to the department of co­ operation and development. She must get a certi­ficate of appointment. This means she can see to her husband’s business. Then she must go to Old Mutual. There she must fill in an affidavit form. She will have to pay R 15.00 They will send the copy of the policy. Then your sister can take it and get the money. We hope that you can do all this easily. -editor


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