Like clean-up and dry-out after a snow storm, after Fraser's estate "earned" several consecutive annual income deficits, I wrote to Fraser's KwaZulu-Natal carers. My July 2008 letter to a Pietermaritzburg Mental Health Society manager:
"During the 10 years my brother Fraser Esslemont has resided at Sunnyside Farm his accommodation fees and sundry fees have increased several times from R... to R... p.m. As Sunnyside got a state subsidy payment in addition to Fraser's fees paid by his curator, regular Sunnyside fee increases smack of exploitation of a vulnerable patient.
With reference to your June 2008 letter copy, received with Fraser's annual estate statements from his curator, I note Sunnyside fees have again increased.
1. Accommodation Fee Increases:
Fraser's accommodation fees, which have regularly increased over the years, have cancelled income from investments in Fraser's estate, thus causing Fraser to become poorer. Regular Sunnyside fee increases therefore do not provide financial security for Fraser.
Does Fraser have his own private room and ablutions, or does Fraser sleep in a shared hostel room with shared ablutions?
If so, how many hostel men share a hostel room and ablutions with Fraser?
2. Fraser's Pocket Money, Toiletry Fee and Ambulance Fee:
In 2003, when I queried ... about Fraser's pocket money and fees disbursement, her September 2003 letter (incorrectly spelt Esslemont surname) said, "Fraser spends his pocket money on tobacco, toiletries and tuck..."
Your June 2008 letter says, "R... for pocket money, R... for toiletries and R... for KwaZulu Private Ambulance service..."
2.1 In 2003, I queried ... about disbursement of Fraser's pocket money, as Fraser had told me Sunnyside was saving it for him - 5 years' worth. Although ... posted me a copy of 5 months of Fraser's fees (which did not tell me how Fraser's pocket money was disbursed) I had no way of ascertaining what happened to Fraser's pocket money during the first 5 years of Fraser's Sunnyside stay.
If Sunnyside had saved Fraser's pocket money for him, it should have been returned to Fraser's curator for reinvestment in Fraser's estate.
2.2 What does Fraser's monthly R... Toiletries fee actually buy: Toilet paper? Deodorant? Shavers? Soap?
According to ... 2003 letter, Fraser buys toiletries with his monthly R... pocket money as well.
2.3 Why does Sunnyside not have its own emergency transport?
How does the monthly R... ambulance fee actually benefit Fraser?
If Fraser does not use an ambulance during the year, does Sunnyside refund the annual ambulance fee back to Fraser's curator for reinvestment in Fraser's estate?
If not, what is the paid ambulance fee used for?
The last time I heard Fraser needed an ambulance was on 01.04.1987, over 21 years ago, when Fraser was transported brain damaged from Verulam to Addington Hospital.
3. Correct Esslemont Surname Spelling:
In future, please ensure that our Esslemont surname is spelt correctly. Esslemont is right. Esselmont is wrong. Over the last 10 years, although I have indicated incorrect spelling of our Esslemont surname, Sunnyside, Pmb. Mental Health Soc. and Town Hill have persisted in incorrectly spelling our Esslemont surname."
In July 2008, I wrote to Fraser's curator asking him to review Fraser's estate investments and reinvestments where appropriate, to stop Fraser becoming poorer and left in a SA wilderness. I also queried discrepancies I'd found in the last 14 estate accounts, and asked for explanations and rectifications where necessary in Fraser's reinvestments.
Zimbabwe inflation rate: 2.2 million percent, the highest inflation rate in the world. (Voice of America, 16.07.08). If that Mugabe-mad inflation hit SA, Fraser would be in trouble. We knew an elderly Zimbabwe expat, who'd worked for years in Rhodesia. Although his pension fund had closed in Zimbabwe, his closing payout was 1000 000 worthless Zimbabwe dollars, equivalent to 3 NZ cents.
22.07.08 NZTV showed a Harare Rainbow Towers hotel room with Mbeki overseeing Mugabe shaking hands with Tsvangirai, regarding an "inclusive government" agreement they'd signed. (IOL) It remained to be seen how inclusive government would evolve with mugged citizens starving and homeless in Zimbabwe, and millions of despised refugees in neighbouring countries like SA.
30.07.08 While Zimbabwe's MDC reps negotiated with ZANU-PF's reps in SA towards an inclusive government, Zimbabwe's Central Bank governor announced that from 01.08.08 10 zeros would be chopped off the Zimbabwe currency to combat inflation: "10 billion Zimbabwe dollars will be reduced to one dollar." (IOL)
As for NZ's 01.08.08 "Stuff" article: "NZ a 'giant transit lounge for Australia,'" so what? That's not news, as immigrants had acquired NZ citizenship for many years, then moved on to Australia for various reasons, especially the fact that they couldn't find NZ jobs suitable for their expertise and work experience gained in other countries, at no cost to NZ. Australia offered better life prospects for many, including native-born Kiwis. Picking out South Africans, Brits and Indians as country-hoppers was biased nonsense, as other countries weren't mentioned in the article, neither did the article mention many native-born Kiwis who also moved to Australia for better prospects. In the 13 years we'd resided in Christchurch, I'd seen many articles and TV programmes about Kiwis moving across the Tasman. I knew many South African migrants happy to bring personal and financial wealth to NZ, happy to stay in NZ, contribute to NZ society, pay NZ taxes, buy NZ property and goods, and safely educate their kids in NZ.
06.08.08 "The Mercury" headline "Amnesty Plan for Mugabe:" Resulting from SA talks, mad murderer Mugabe would get away with ruining Zimbabwe, with Zimbabweans being given blanket amnesty for political crimes by ZANU-PF and MDC during Mugabe's 28 year regime, thus absolving Mugabe and his Fifth Brigade minions of murdering Matabele during the early 1980s, and allowing Mugabe to stay president during a transitional power-sharing government, with Tsvangirai as executive PM. Psychopath Hitler shot himself, but psychopath Mugabe stayed president!
Copyright Mark JS Esslemont.