Commuters in Nelspruit, most of them domestic workers, are furious because the municipality has surrounded their bus shelter with barbed wire.
Now unable to use the shelter, they are exposed to the rain while waiting for a bus.
Many domestic workers used the bus shelter at Ehmke Street in Nelspruit's suburb of Sonheuwel until employees of the Mbombela local municipality blocked their access to it.
Sheila Magagula, a domestic worker, said yester day: "As you can see for yourself, the rain is pouring and we have to queue like this before boarding a bus because someone in the municipality believes this is the right thing to do - but that someone travels in a luxury vehicle without being exposed to rain."
She said the municipality was heartless and did not care about people who earned too little to afford a car and were forced to rely on buses.
Magagula said that the municipal workers said they secured the area to prevent dagga-smoking criminals from using it.
"My fellow commuters claim that the people who put up the barbed wire told them that dagga- smokers were using the shelter, especially during the night.
"But closing it does not help us in any way," Magagula said.
Another commuter, Sylvia Lekhuleni, told Sowetan that the rain sometimes caught people waiting for a bus without an umbrella.
This put their health at risk and they would reach work wet and cold.
A Mbombela municipal spokesman, Vusi Sibiya, said: "The municipality cannot immediately comment on the matter because we have to check the facts first."