Woman forced to sing for pension

An 87-year-old KwaZulu-Natal woman was alledgedly forced to sing over a public address system before she was allowed to collect her pension, a family member claimed.

According to The Witness, officials at the pension office refused to hand over Ria van Straaten's pension until she sang for them. Van Straaten's son, Braam (63), claims that his mother thought the officials were joking, until they thrust a microphone into her hand and told her to sing.

Van Straaten was left speechless by the actions and was again told that if she did not sing she would not get her pension. She sang 'Happy Birthday,' reportedly to the laughter of the officials.

Van Straten is now too scared to go back to the office and collect her next pension cheque, her son said.

A spokesperson for the pension office wants the Van Straatens to name the officials involved before taking action against them.