Gutsy Gogo goes extra mile to ensure she places her mark

When IEC officials failed to knock on 83-year-old Nombuyiselo Mbengo’s home to allow her to cast her vote on Tuesday, she got up yesterday and, despite a bent back, picked up her stick and hobbled to her local voting station.

83-year-old Nombuyiselo Esther Mbengo from Macacuba village in Sterkspruit finally managed to cast her vote after missing out on special votes on Tuesday.She cant walk upright as her spinal cord is bent  owing to an old injury.She says she hopes her vote will translate into clean accessible water for her and other villagers Picture:  SIKHO NTSHOBANE
83-year-old Nombuyiselo Esther Mbengo from Macacuba village in Sterkspruit finally managed to cast her vote after missing out on special votes on Tuesday. She cant walk upright as her spinal cord is bent owing to an old injury.She says she hopes her vote will translate into clean accessible water for her and other villagers Picture: SIKHO NTSHOBANE

From her humble mud house in Macacuba village outside Sterkspruit, the journey took her about 20 minutes to the voting station located about 200 metres from her home.

Despite the difficulty in walking and the cold and wet weather, the pensioner, armed with her ID, patiently navigated rocks protruding and potholes on the dirt road, as she slowly trudged towards one of the classrooms at the Macacuba Junior Secondary School which is where she cast her vote shortly after 9am.

She believes she was left out by IEC officials because she sympathises with the Sterkspruit Civic Alliance.

“I saw them going to a next door neighbour instead. I waited but they then left without coming to my own house,” she said.

The elderly woman said she was not angry at the IEC for giving her the cold shoulder but she was happy to have been able to cast her vote.

She hoped her vote will herald a better life for her and her grandchild who stays with her. At the top of her wish list is to see water flowing from taps in her village.

“There are taps but no water at the moment. I just hope this changes soon because we really need water,” she said. — sikhon@dispatch.co.za

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