South Africa: Joy as child, 6, gets birth certificate at long last with help of Lawyers for Human Rights

Published: 5/Jun/2023
Source: Pretoria News

By Zelda Venter

Pretoria – It was a joyous occasion this week for a six-year-old child who was orphaned at the age of five months when her mother died, when the court, with the help of Lawyers for Human Rights, ordered authorities to issue her with a birth certificate.

The little girl, only known as MJM because of her age, now has both legal status in the country and her great- grandmother and great-grand uncle declared as responsible for her care.

The Tembisa Children’s Court, held at the Tembisa Magistrate’s Court, granted an order for the Department of Home Affairs to register her birth.

The little girl was not only let down by bureaucratic red tape, as it was proved that she was born in a Gauteng hospital, thus by birth a South African citizen, but social workers were unwilling to take on her case and left her in the cold, the court heard.

Meanwhile, family members were desperate to take care of her when they came to know of her plight. While the great grandmother, who is in her 90s, and the uncle, who is elderly, tried everything in their power to obtain a birth certificate for the child so that they could adopt her, they were met by red tape and unwillingness to assist.

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Themes: Acquisition by children, Birth Registration
Regions: South Africa
Year: 2023