Dejected teen sues Home Affairs after missed football opportunity

Ganiyu Yusuf
The heartbreaking story involving an aspiring footballer and his dream of playing abroad is likely to go to court

A young boy’s dream of playing football abroad is likely to end in a court battle.

George Maskini, a 13-year-old boy with a desire of playing football abroad, was denied that dream twice due to administrative issues.

 Maskini was initially set to participate in a soccer tournament in Thailand in November after his teacher was able to raise the funds, only for him to be denied that opportunity as he was deemed ineligible to qualify for a South African passport.

Maskini who is the offspring of parents from the Democratic Republic of Congo, then received assistance from the deputy minister of Home Affairs Fatima Chohan, but would later find out that the documents that were given to him were not adequate for him to leave the country.

Furthermore, after hearing about Maskini’s disappointment, Rasthoem Simons of Simsport Eagles put a smile on the teenager’s face as he decided to allow Maskini to join his squad on their trip to Dubai.

However, once again, Maskini would be left disappointed and dejected. In spite of Maskini’s mother going out of her way to confirm that the passport that her son had received was indeed valid, he would receive heartbreaking news when he was told at the airport that his passport was cancelled and declared lost and stolen.

Nonetheless, following Maskini’s latest setback, he will now be suing the Department of Home Affairs for negligence. According to reports by Cape Argus, Maskini who hails from Brooklyn in Milnerton, is preparing to sue the department for R461 000.

“What made us decide to take them to court was after the Dubai incident,” George’s mother Bampende Maskini was quoted as saying by Cape Argus.

“When I went to Home Affairs to get answers, no one could explain to me properly what happened and it just made me realise that they are heartless,” she added.

Article continues below

Meanwhile, the family’s attorney has confirmed that they are in the middle of finalising court papers after the Department failed to respond to their letter of demand.

“I can confirm that we are finalising our court papers which will be soon served at the Department of Home Affairs after their failure to respond to our letter of demand,” attorney Romeo Tsusi told the publication.