• Zimbabwean labourer alleges the late Minister’s son broke down his door when stopped manning the graveyard
• But the Kgoroba brothers accuse the Zimbabwean of owing rental and abusing the family hospitality
A 32-year old Zimbabwean labourer lost his job and accommodation after he allegedly refused to continue watering and removing weeds from the grave of the late Minister of Education, George Kgoroba.
Clement Mutanho, who says he has been working for the Kgorobas for eight years now, alleged that Sedirwa ‘Chillyboy’ Kgoroba, broke down the door to his rented room when he stopped weeding off and watering the former minister’s grave and that reserved for his mother at Block 5 cemetery in Gaborone.
Sedirwa admitted breaking down the door at the Kgoroba’s multi-residential complex in Mogoditshane, but only because Mutanho owed too much rental and refused to move out. On the day the door was broken down, the police came and arrested a “violent” Mutanho. The Zimbabwean was released after three days and the charges were dropped.
Now Mutanho plans suing the Kgorobas, as he insists he not only was being victimised for refusing a bizarre instruction to water the graves, but that he was being owed over P40 000 in unpaid wages.
Mutanho told The Voice that he started working for the Kgoroba family in 2002, doing mainly maintenance of their properties and any other jobs that came along.
Mutanho alleged that in January this year, Sedirwa Kgoroba, the son of the late Minister told him that he would be adding another portfolio to his job that is removing weeds and watering the grave of his late father and one reserved for his mother in Block five cemetery three times a week.
“It was a very difficult job to do, it was never easy tending to the graves but I just did the job because Kgoroba was threatening to evict me from his compound where I was using a room. Eventually I could not do it anymore because I was afraid of being alone in the graveside all the time and when I told him I could not do it anymore he told me to move out of the room,’’ said Mutanho.
But when he refused to move out, as he was “owed a lot of money”, Kgoroba then removed the door of his room.
“I then confronted him and started demanding all the money that they owed me as I had been working but not getting my salary in full,’’ he claimed.
Mutanho also alleged that his standoff with Kgoroba started last year as he had a tendency of making him work and then refuse to pay him, or if he was paid, he was given very little money compared to what they would have agreed on.
“They owe me at least P40 000 dating from way back and I want that money,’’ said Mutanho revealing that he was preparing to file his case with the courts as advised by the police.
However Sedirwa Kgoroba refuted the allegations leveled by Mutanho saying the latter never worked for him but his late father.
“He was not even a full-time employee but just did piece jobs. As for the door in his room, yes I removed it last week it because he has been refusing to move out. He has not been paying rent for almost four years and but he is refusing to move out,’’ he said adding that he once took him to the Kgotla for refusing to move out.
He also denied the fact that he asked him to tend to his father’s grave saying that was an issue between Mutanho and his brother Kerumile Kgoroba.
Kerumile Kgoroba (50) did not deny that he offered Mutanho a job to weed and water his father’s grave but refuted the allegation that he forced him to do so. He also denied the fact that Mutanho tended to the grave for three months.
“Clement (Mutanho) was suffering with no money and out of courtesy I offered him the job which he failed to do anyway and now this is how he pays me and my father who took care of him,’’ said Kerumile in references to Mutanho’s decision to talk to The Voice.
“How can he drag my late father’s name into this after all that he (the late Kgoroba) did for him. Since he is saying he is owed money why didn’t he go to the right people to report instead of going to the newspapers?” asked a visible angry Kerumile.