Besieged waste pickers live in fear

03 May 2019 - 06:00 By BELINDA PHETO

A waste picker can make up to R2500 a week on plastic alone and can move up to eight tons of recycling from landfills every month. TimesLive takes a closer look at the conditions that these eco-warriors face.

Hardlife Mzamane, 30, is one of the many waste pickers who make a living rifling through trash at the Rietfontein dumpsite in Ekurhuleni. He comes out with about R1,800 a month after paying “protection money” to a gang – R300 a week.

And they are still reeling following the murder of two colleagues whose bodies were found with gunshot wounds at the same dumpsite they were working from.