South Africa: Farmworker Activist Arrested in Winelands As Family of Six Is Evicted


Hidden away in the breathtaking Cape winelands is the scourge of farm evictions. On Wednesday, following the eviction of a family of six, including three schoolgoing children, a group of women protested and Women on Farms activist Colette Solomons was arrested.

"All our women are extremely upset and shocked," said Carmen Louw on Wednesday afternoon. Louw, a co-director of Women on Farms (WoF), along with about 30 women, had protested against the eviction of six people in Simondium near Paarl in the Cape winelands. This is where her fellow co-director, Colette Solomons was arrested by police while sitting in the road singing protest songs.

Solomons was released on Wednesday evening and will appear in the Paarl Magistrate's Court on charges of public violence.

WoF is a nonprofit organisation assisting and educating women farmworkers and farm-dwellers in Western and Northern Cape agricultural communities. It had been helping the Petersen family, whose furniture was dumped on the side of the road after the family was evicted from the Aruna Farm in Simondium.

According to WoF, Fransiena Petersen was born on the farm and worked there from the age of 14. On Tuesday, the Petersen family, including three schoolgoing children, was served...

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