On Wednesday, one of South Africa’s oldest people – Johanna Mazibuko – will be celebrating her 128th birthday.
Mazibuko lives in Jouberton in Klerksdorp, North West, and was born on a maize farm in the Ottosdal area.
She was the first of 12 children; only three are still alive.
Though she managed to reach the advanced age of 128, Mazibuko and her siblings never learnt to read or write due to the fact that they were born on farms and never got an opportunity to get an education.
“I was born on a farm. We lived so well on the farms. There were no problems.”
Due to her advanced age, Mazibuko does not remember much of her childhood. What she remembers, though, is the time when there was an infestation of locusts on the farms.
She, however, says not all of it was disruptive to the maize crops.
“There were ones we could catch and eat. It was like you are eating meat. We would just fry them and eat them like that, just on their own.”
During her interview with News24, Mazibuko was sipping on her favourite “modern” drink – Coca Cola – but said she grew up on a totally different diet, which was devoid of soft drinks and fast food.
Growing up, she said, her diet consisted of fresh milk and wild spinach.
“Now, I eat modern food. I am used to it, but I do miss the food I grew up on.”
Marriage and children
She doesn’t know at what age or year she got married, but knows she got married to an elderly widower, Stawana Mazibuko.
“I was married to an older man. His first wife had died. He was an independent man. He had a horse carriage and cows. I would milk the cows and make butter to sell. That man treated me very well and made me forget about my life before him. I did not want for anything.”