Beitul Aman Home of the Aged (BUA) is again in the spotlight after allegations of a seventy-eight year old, Yusuf Harrison, being evicted from the home. The issue sparked a major outcry from members of the local community, after photos were posted on social media.
According to BUA spokesperson Nadir Agherdien, Harrison had long history of violent behaviour that had in fact caused the board to evict him from the premises. He explained that Harrison sought shelter at BUA after being released from Pollsmoor Prison. Recent allegations on Facebook by Faizal Rajie and another individual, have ranged from Harrison being banned from practising his religion and him being abused and fed poisonous food at the facility.
“Yusuf Harrison has been experienced by staff and management to be a pathological liar with numerous examples on record in his file at BUA. What is laughable is that he has pulled the wool over the eyes of his supporters,” he said.
“Staff allowed Harrison to attend mosque at prayer times even though there is a fully functional salah facility at the institution. Harrison then used that time to make unwelcome visits to neighbours and was even accused of touching the daughter of one neighbour. In another incident, Harrison threatened to physically hurt a staff member with a pair of scissors.”
Agherdien conceded that the home has come under immense scrutiny from certain individuals whom he claims is adamant to see the current board members fall. The latest allegation is one of a string of complaints against management and staff, who have been accused of not properly managing the frail care centre. Recent rumours circulated pointed to claims of mismanagement, ill-treatment toward residents, food wastage and many others. Agherdien said the allegations have put BUA in a negative light in the public’s eye.
Supporting Harrison is Faizal Rajie, an outcast member of the institution who has been at the forefront of the social media campaigns against BUA. For most of last year, Rajie was firm in his resolve to raise awareness of the alleged mismanagement at the facility.
In response to Agherdien’s statement, Rajie claimed that if Harrison had in fact been guilty of soliciting a minor or verbally and physically abusing staff members at BUA, then he would stand behind the law. However, Rajie questioned why BUA had then not gotten authorities involved and followed legal procedures in filing criminal charges against Harrison. Harrison is now residing at a Haven Shelter in the Salt River area.
Rajie explained that through his experience, he has not witnessed any desire from BUA Board members to consider the input of fellow members on ways to improve the conditions at BUA. Rajie added that while his method of naming and shaming on social media is not necessarily the most effective way to reach a collective agreement between BUA and himself, his efforts have been purely done out of frustration in his plight to better the lives of residents at BUA.
In conclusion, Agherdien conceded that while that are issues at BUA that need to be addressed, input from the community in ways to better improve the overall facility is welcomed. Anyone can become a member by simply contributing R50 per month. VOC (Ra’eesah Isaacs)