Grieving wife’s fury over £400 voucher

The £400 decorating voucher


A woman is demanding a housing association issue a new £400 voucher for home improvement work after the first one expired while she was grieving her husband’s death.

Mary Obiorah, 47, from Sydenham, found the lost voucher in her late husband’s jacket at in December and claims that Hexagon Housing are ignoring her appeals to extend it.

Hexagon say that Mrs Obiorah knew she had only one year to spend the voucher but she is welcome to appeal the decision if she does not agree with it.

But Mrs Obiorah feels her situation has been handled badly and believes that Hexagon should now reach out to her.

The Lewisham Hospital employee said: “How could they expect me to think about the voucher when my husband had just passed?

“It hasn’t been easy. In that period after he died I couldn’t think straight. He’s the person who brought me here to this country. I was depressed.”

Mrs Obiorah said she was do devastated by her loss that it took her a year to start clearing out her husband’s belongings. She has been in bereavement counselling and on medication.

She found the £400 voucher in his jacket pocket, awarded to the pair when Hexagon moved them from their Forest Hill home to a new property in Sydenham.

“I went to Hexagon and told them what had happened but they said there is nothing they can do.

“If they don’t want to issue the voucher then let them come and buy me paint or decorate the house for me.

“I have tried to contact them and they just ignore me. Now they need to come to me and do something for me.”

A spokeswoman for Hexagon Housing said that when they supply a resident with a voucher they are required to pay the full cost of the card up front.

If the card is not redeemed in the allotted time they still incur the cost which they claim is their reason for declining Mrs Obiorah’s request to renew the voucher.

“It is important to note that the decision was not made with any consideration for Ms Obiorah’s bereavement, for which we send our condolences.

“This is new information which was not considered at the time, so in that context, we would repeat our previously extended invitation to Ms Obiorah to make further representations so that we can look at  our decision with all relevant information to hand.”

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