Sun Oct 23 01:41:36 SAST 2016

Workers on farm denied the right to vote - claim

By unknown | Apr 24, 2009 | COMMENTS [ 0 ]

Mckeed Kotlolo

Mckeed Kotlolo

The Elias Motsoaledi local municipality in Mpumalanga is to investigate allegations that two farmers in the area had refused their workers permission to go and cast their votes on Wednesday.

About 350 farmworkers are alleged not to have voted. Only seven workers from Mohulwana farm were allowed to vote after the farmer was confronted by party leaders and IEC officials on Wednesday afternoon.

According to farmworkers the problems started long before the elections when farmers refused parties to campaign on their properties. They locked up their workers and told them not to allow strangers in.

At the HM Pieterse farm near Groblersdal, the owner's son-in-law allegedly stopped vehicles that were already transporting part of his estimated 100 workers to the polling station.

He allegedly ordered them off the vehicles and called those transporting them and was rude.

A worker, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said: "He told the drivers that no kaffirs are allowed on his property and that his workers are not going to vote because they were good people."

The worker also said they worked under very difficult conditions and were always locked inside the property.

The farm produces tobacco and oranges.

Municipal electoral officer for Elias Motsoaledi municipality Langa Kabini confirmed the incidents.

He said party leaders and IEC officials managed to convince the owner of Mohulwana farm to transport his workers to the stations.

He said out of about 250 workers, the owner only took seven to a polling station where they voted.

"The rest did not vote and we are going to investigate the matter and ensure that a permanent solution to the problem is found," he said.


Login OR Join up TO COMMENT