Family of dead man demand answers

A De Doorns man is heartbroken after his brother was shot dead, allegedly by police.

Striking farmworkers hurl rocks at police during a protest for better wages in De Doorns in the Western Cape, Thursday, 10 January 2013. Picture: Nardus Engelbrecht/SAPA

CAPE TOWN - The brother of a man, who died allegedly after being shot and assaulted by police in De Doorns, has demanded answers as to why he was targeted because was not even a striking farmworker.

Letsekang Thokoane died at the Tygerberg Hospital earlier this week.

It is alleged police opened fire on him with rubber bullets in the volatile Stofland informal settlement outside De Doorns.

The area has been at the centre of the ongoing farmworkers strike in the Cape.

A frown appears on Atang Thokoane's forehead as he explains how his brother died.

"I feel heartbroken. We didn't even say goodbye to him before he died. He didn't work at a farm, he worked at a spaza shop."

Thokoane was allegedly shot at close range with rubber bullets before being beaten.

Eyewitnesses say he was simply opening up the shop when police targeted him.

The 25-year-old man's employer, who does not want to be named, says there are too many unanswered questions.

"They got there and just started shooting. He was hit in the head with a rubber bullet. Then police left him, but later came back."

The incident is being investigated by the Independent Police Investigative Directorate (IPID).

Meanwhile, the Labour Department will meet with unions to discuss minimum wages for workers in De Doorns on Wednesday evening.

Farmworkers are demanding a R150 daily wage.

Several people have been arrested since the industrial action broke out earlier in January.