False Information leads to chaos as food parcels are handed out
More than 20,000 people gathered at the school in Olievenhoutbosch where achurch together with a foundation were distributing food parcels to the community.
Also contributing to the chaos on Saturday was the arrival of people from other communities outside Olievenhoutbosch, who were not eligible to receive the food parcels.
The church leader dismissed suggestions that there was a stampede earlier but admitted that things had got out of control with people trying to force their way into the centre where the food parcels were being handed out.However, volunteers had managed to restore calm.
Pretorious said they had distributed food to more than 3,000 families since Wednesday and that they had about 30,000 families on their database before the food drive began. He said the project was made possible by the Douw Steyn family trust and other private businesses.
However on Saturday afternoon, things were calm with people divided into queues. Soldiers and police were also ensuring that people in the queues maintained physical distancing.
“We are giving priority to the elderly and pregnant women. They have their own queue and the other queues are divided by sections which people come from,” Pretorius said.
Before entering the premises, recipients must show a bar coded tag and form of identification and their temperature is also checked,
Gauteng acting MEC for social development Panyaza Lesufi rushed to the area after news that a stampede had broken out. He commended the church and the foundation for the great work that they did.
One of the recipients, Patricia Sibiya from extension 19 in Olievenhoutbosch sad she was very happy with the food parcels. The unemployed mother of two said she joined the 2km-long queue at 4am. She only received her food parcel just after 1pm but said it was worth the wait.
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