RAF ‘keeps crash vic­tim wait­ing for com­pen­sa­tion’

The Star Early Edition - - NEWS - NOKUTHULA ZWANE

A 32-YEAR-OLD woman with a chronic con­di­tion has been left home­less and help­less af­ter the Road Accident Fund (RAF) failed to pay her com­pen­sa­tion for 13 years.

Clau­dine Jack­lyn Bell has dif­fi­culty breath­ing and has to make use of an im­planted pipe to breathe, a con­di­tion called Ery­throme­lal­gia. This fol­lowed a car crash on Ox­ford Road, Joburg, in De­cem­ber 2004, when she was 19 years old.

“I was in hos­pi­tal for a year, so I couldn’t claim and no­body from RAF came to me,” she said.

Ac­cord­ing to Bell, her claim has been met with many chal­lenges. “When I went to the RAF, they were giv­ing me a lot of sto­ries, say­ing they gave me a pay­out sum­mary. They say my claim is pre­scribed,” she said.

“Every time I go there (RAF), they give me dif­fer­ent sto­ries like the dates are not right… this is my last re­sort,” she said.

“My big­gest chal­lenge is I can­not work and my hus­band doesn’t earn enough.

“This accident has stopped me from hav­ing chil­dren,” added Bell.

RAF spokesper­son Than­deka Ng­wenya said she needed time to find the file de­spite The Star wait­ing two weeks for an­swers.

“Kindly note that we need a bit of time to re­spond as the file of this claimant needs to be re­trieved by the claims handler from the fil­ing sys­tem in or­der for us to fully as­sist with this en­quiry,” said Ng­wenya.

She sais she would only have a suf­fi­cient re­sponse on the pro­cesses of deal­ing with cases that are older than 10 years old by to­day.

Bell’s hus­band, Xavier Charles Phillips, says his wife’s con­di­tion has been hard for him and up­sets him be­cause he can­not have chil­dren or pro­vide suf­fi­ciently for his fam­ily.

Phillips told The Star that late at night, he would have to rush her to the hos­pi­tal be­cause she would be cough­ing the whole night.

“It makes me an­gry.” @Zwane_2li2ls

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