WHEN gogo Martha went to visit a doctor four years ago she thought her health problem was just a minor thing.

But gogo Martha Shabangu (69) of Boekenhouthoek in Mpumalanga is still complaining of pain in her stomach.


No one seems to know what is wrong with her. Her body is swollen from water retention and she can no longer travel to the hospital as she can hardly walk. She can no longer sleep on her own bed.


gogo Martha


Her breasts, stomach, legs and arms are too heavy for her to carry.

“I have been in and out of hospital but am not getting any better. I’ve been to sangomas and prophets with no luck. I am in pain day and night,” she said.

Gogo Martha said she uses a wheelchair to sleep because no one is able to lift her from her bed.

“The hospital has tried to drain the water but it keeps coming back. The lump inside my stomach has also grown big and painful. The pills are not helping. Doctors don’t seem to know what the cause is so they can’t operate.”

Gogo Martha’s husband, Paulos Skhosana (69), said he is trying his best to take care of his wife but the problem is her weight. “She is in so much pain and because of her weight she can’t visit the clinic. Any kind of help would really be appreciated,” said Paulos.

Dr Bob-John Masango said the woman might be suffering from cardio-renal failure.

“Gogo needs to consult a doctor to determine which of her organs is failing,” said Dr Masango.

Traditional Healers Practitioners chairman Sonnyboy Msiza said: “She needs a powerful sangoma who will take her to the bush for treatment.

“After a few weeks the water will stop and her body will be back to normal.”

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