South Africa: Echoes of Vrede Dairy - Mpumalanga Poultry Project Hijacked By the Politically Connected, Say Farmers


The KwaMhlanga Poultry Project, meant to benefit emerging farmers in the same way the ill-fated Vrede Dairy Project would have, is in tatters. Among other complaints, a group of people who did not qualify for inclusion but benefited because of their political influence and connections, have hijacked the project and ruined its prospects.

Kwazi Dlamini is a content producer at Corruption Watch with a focus on investigating allegations of corruption in the public and private sectors.

A state-funded poultry farming project in KwaMhlanga, Mpumalanga, meant to help develop the local economy, is embroiled in financial distress and factional battles, allegedly caused by public officials meant to manage it. The matter has since reached the courts.

The KwaMhlanga Poultry Project (KPP) is mired in allegations of corruption that are being investigated by the Department of Rural Development and Land Reform. The frustration comes from the department's snail's-pace approach to its investigation - in which its officials are implicated - that has been going on for three years, while some of the project beneficiaries are deprived of a stable income.

The KPP is styled in a similar way to the much-publicised Vrede Dairy Project in the Free State that has received major...

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