Bloemfontein - A man has been arrested in Zastron in the Free State for alleged child labour, the labour department said on Friday.
The man had allegedly employed a 14-year-old boy as his domestic worker, department spokesman Wisane Mavasa said in a statement.
He was arrested on Thursday. The department opened a case after the boy's mother reported the matter. She claimed her son had been working for the man since last Friday and worked five days a week from 9am to 4pm for R30 a day.
Labour inspectors visited the man and found the boy cutting trees.
Mavasa said the boy was a grade six pupil at a local school and had been absent from class since he started working.
The man would appear in court on Monday.
The department warned employers to not hire children for cheap labour.
“In terms of the Basic Conditions of Employment Act it is a criminal offence to employ any child under 15 years of age, who is under the minimum school leaving age in terms of the law, or any child to do work that is inappropriate for their age that may place them at risk,” Mavasa said.
If convicted, the employer could be sentenced to a fine or imprisonment of three years. - Sapa