A court order that has been ignored by Home Affairs officials since November 2019, could have meant that a child in rural KwaZulu-Natal lost out on her foreign inheritance amounting to R8 million.
Home Affairs minister, Aaron Motsoaledi, has stepped in and ordered his department to urgently rectify the situation by amending her birth certificate.
The child’s mother was involved in a five-year relationship with the Unisa law professor, Hans Schulze. Just before he died from cancer in early 2019, he married the child’s mother in a civil ceremony, paid R60 000 lobola, and adopted the girl in terms of "cultural laws", reports Times Live.
Schulze’s mother died shortly after him in Germany and, according to German laws, the girl stood to inherit R8 million. German courts however, wouldn’t accept the birth certificate of the child as her surname hasn't been amended to Schulze.
After desperately trying to amend the surname at the Centurion Home Affairs branch and eventually heading to lawyers for help, the court order was still ignored by the department.
The German courts gave the mother a deadline of 24 August 2020.
After hearing about it, Motsoaledi stepped in. IOL reports that Mosoaledi slammed officials for failing to act on the court order.
"Disciplinary action will be taken against any official found to have flouted the policies and codes governing the civil service," he said.
Image credit: EWN and DispatchLIVE