Forced to comply with the insurance company, a family in South Africa ended up bringing the corpse of their family member into an insurance company’s office after the said they needed to prove that the man was dead.
Ntombenhle Mhlongo and Thandaza Mtshali were in a video that showed them taking the body of Sifiso Justice Mhlongo, their uncle, inside a branch of Old Mutual in KwaZulu-Natal Province in South Africa after their claim on a funeral plan was delayed.
Watch the full video of the horrible incident below:
[EXPOSE OLD MUTUAL] Family bring their dead family member after @OldMutualSA refused to pay their policy benefit. Old Mutual’s arrogance is stinking now. What a shame! May the soul of the poor person Rest In Peace. Plz Retweet. pic.twitter.com/Gk2QFQWkoM
— White Man Confession (@ConfessionWhite) November 19, 2019
According to reports, the claim of the family, which is word nearly $2000, was delayed for 9 days due to technicality errors.
This caused the important tribal rites for their uncle to be delayed.
Sifiso Justice Mhlongo was just 46.
Ntombenhle, the person who brought the dead body of Sifiso Justice Mhlongo to the insurance company’s office, said, “We are not rich people. We are poor and they were refusing to pay us. We are still so heartbroken.”
Ntombenhle added, “We kept going back but they kept stonewalling and we were angry, frustrated and just wanted to make sure we could properly prepare and bury him. We thought if the documents do not give them enough answers then maybe the body will.”
The video of the family bringing the dead body into the insurance company’s office went viral after it got widely shared on Twitter, Reddit, and Facebook.
In the video, you can see the women inside the bank with the dead body of Sifiso Justice Mhlongo, which is placed inside a bag.
People who saw the incident said they were horrified after they realized that there was a body inside the bag.
According to reports, the family brought the body to the branch from the morgue.
The 2 women handed over the paperwork for the man’s life insurance claim, along with his ID and death certificate.
According to Witnesses, the ladies told the staff that they won’t leave the office until they paid them the claim in full.
The company was forced to agree with the insurance claim and asked the family to remove the dead body from their office.
A witness of the incident said, “As soon as the ladies were promised they would be paid they marched back inside the office and in front of the counter grabbed an end each and carried the corpse back out.”
The witness added, “Two men went to their aid and helped them maneuver the body bag into the boot of the car that they brought the body in and people were just watching open-mouthed as all this was played out.”
The witness continued, “The women said a loved one was inside the body bag and that bringing him to the Old Mutual office seemed to be the only way to prove their claim to them that he had actually passed away.”
After the video went viral on Twitter, Old Mutual went on and released an official statement about the incident and apologized for what happened.
Good evening, this has been most unsettling and we are sympathetic towards the family during this difficult time. We can confirm that the claim was paid. Due to the sensitive nature of this matter, we will continue engaging directly with the family.
— Old Mutual SA (@OldMutualSA) November 19, 2019
The statement said, “Good evening, this has been most unsettling and we are sympathetic towards the family during this difficult time. We can confirm that the claim was paid. Due to the sensitive nature of this matter, we will continue engaging directly with the family.”
The statement added, “We take note of this incident and would like to assure our customers that claims are assessed on an individual basis and the incident at this branch whilst isolated is regrettable.”
The statement continued, “While we make every attempt to settle claims as speedily as possible, this specific claim had to undergo further assessments. Old Mutual strives to pay claims speedily – 99% of funeral claims are paid within 8 hours once all requirements are met.”
Muzi Hlengwa, the spokesperson for the National Funeral Practitioners Association of South Africa, said they are going to consider taking legal action against the insurance company.
Muzi said, “When the body was taken from the mortuary to the Old Mutual it was out of anger so the rituals that were supposed to be done to move the body from one place to another were not done.”
Muzi added, “The soul of that man is still left at the Old Mutual so they will have to cover the costs of performing these rituals.”
The body was reportedly returned to the mortuary after the insurance claim was given out to the family.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Sifiso Justice Mhlongo and his family.
May the soul of Sifiso Justice Mhlongo rest in peace.