A STORY OF TRAGEDY TO TRIUMPH AND HOPE

During my recovery process, I came across a gentleman by the name of Juma who was a physiotherapist at Gelukspan Hospital. 
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By Boitumelo Boweni and Mosilonyane Ramookho

  • On April 15th, 1988, Paul Majako (66) from Madibogo, North West, experienced a life-altering event when he was mugged and stabbed in the back while walking home from work. The incident left him paralysed from the waist down, changing the course of his life forever.
  • Despite facing immense challenges, including losing his job and his wife leaving him, Paul found hope and support through physiotherapy sessions and the Itsoseng Service Club. These experiences enabled him to regain mobility in his arms and hands and introduced him to the Golden Games, where he has excelled in the PEGS and PEGS category, emerging as a champion.
  • Paul’s journey serves as a testament to the resilience of the human spirit and the power of perseverance. His message of encouragement to others facing similar challenges highlights the importance of never giving up and embracing one’s abilities, no matter the circumstances.

It was on the 15th of April 1988 when Paul Majako (66) from Madibogo in North West, was walking home after knocking off from work when his life unknowingly changed forever. Paul was approached by two unknown strangers who mugged him and took his cell phone and wallet containing money and personal belongings. As if forcefully confiscating his belongings was not enough, the strangers stabbed Paul in his back twice. 

“I don’t remember much about what happened during the stabbing but I just knew that I was on the verge of meeting my maker. I was taken to Hillbrow Hospital in (Gauteng) where I was admitted for 3 months. I learnt that the use of my lower limbs and arms was no longer going to be functional as I was stabbed in my spine. I’ve been living in a wheelchair since then and to how I survived the incident only God knows,” he said.

As a result of the tragic incident, Paul’s life changed dramatically as he battled with accepting his new form and adapting to his new situation. “I was a contract worker so the incident led to me losing my job due to my unproductiveness. My wife left me as she couldn’t cope with my new situation and unemployed status. I was left with my three children who took care of me and continued to look after me,” he says. 

During my recovery process, I came across a gentleman by the name of Juma who was a physiotherapist at Gelukspan Hospital. 

During my healing process, Mr Paul came across a man named Juma from Gelukspan Hospital who took him from his home in Madibogo and introduced him to people dealing with the same circumstances as him. “I was taught to mobilise my arms and legs which eventually led me to being able to use my hands. I was fed up at first but through his persistence and guidance, I’m happy I did not give up.” 

It was through the physio sessions that Paul came across Itsoseng Service Club which is an active aging organisation in Itsoseng. “In 2021 I joined the Itsoseng Service Club and was introduced to Pegs and Pegs which I enjoyed as it was the only active programme I could do.” I started partaking in the Golden Games and have since competed in two National Golden Games, with these in Mpummalnga being my third. In all my years of competing, I’ve successfully emerged as the winner in the PEGS and PEGS category. Even yesterday I came out number one,” he said humorously. 

With every life-changing incident in life, there comes a time when one disregards oneself as one sees no reason for living, especially when one feels like a burden. “I gave up on myself and life as it was tough to adapt to my new situation. With the new lease on life that came my way, I would like to encourage every disabled person not to give up on themselves. Don’t undermine yourself as you are no different from the next person. Look at me now, I’m a National Pegs and Pegs Golden Games champion” he said with a smile. 

A story of hope, inspiration, encouragement and defying odds. 

Mr Paul Majako, from Madibogo District Northwest le ntate Mr Shadrack Mabopa.

Mothusi wa ntate Paul, ba tlile ho nka karolo dipapading tsa naha tsa maqheku di Golden Games.

O hlalosa hore ba ikutlwa matla le morolo  tsatsing lena hobane le bona ba tlo bontsha makgabane a bona papading ya PEX and PEX. 

O re ba fihlile maobane ka di 20 Hlakubele 2024, phirimana. 

“Re tsamaile hantle ntle le mathata, le ha re fihlile bosiu ka hora tsa borobong. Empa ke mona re fihlile ho tla ithabisa.”

“Ke kgetlo la rona la pele re tla Mpumalanga, mme re dula re sebetsa re le mmoho, nna ke etsa bo nnete ba hore ke mo isa hohle moo a batlang teng ntate,” Ntate Shadrack o ne a hlalosa.

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