Cape Town - Employer body Agri-SA on Wednesday said it had
not been contacted by Cosatu regarding a plan to extend a recent wage deal
brokered between farmers and their workers in Clanwilliam, in the Western Cape.
"Except through the media, we've heard nothing from the
Congress of SA Trade Unions or (provincial secretary) Tony Ehrenreich regarding
the deal," labour relations head Elize van der Westhuizen said.
"This deal is typical of what we've asked our members
to do since last year, where they engage directly with farmworkers and
On Tuesday, Ehrenreich announced that a daily wage deal of
R105 had been brokered with a "significant amount" of farmers in
"This agreement represents a model agreement that would
be used in the other areas and towns... as soon as an agreement is concluded in
a town, then that town would be exempted from strike action," he said in a
He said Cosatu would encourage workers to suspend the strike
if Agri-SA acknowledged the Clanwilliam agreement, the space provided for it in
law and give an undertaking to ensure no disciplinary action was taken against
Farmworkers went on strike last year to demand their daily
wage be increased from R69 to R150, and that a coherent land reform programme
The strike was suspended in December, but resumed on
Wednesday last week.
Ehrenreich said Agri-SA had to respond to his request by 1pm
on Wednesday should they want the strike to be possibly suspended.
"This represents a significant move forward and puts
the ball squarely in the court of the Agri-SA to accept the terms and secure a
suspension to the strike, as a matter of urgency," he said.
Van der Westhuizen asked that Cosatu first contact Agri-SA
with information about his request before taking any action.
Agri Wes-Kaap spokesperson Porschia Adams said it had also
not heard from Cosatu or Ehrenreich.
To her knowledge, the wage deal was agreed to by one farmer
who owned a number of farms, rather than multiple farmers.
Ehrenreich was not immediately available to comment.
Cosatu in Limpopo said they fully supported the demands of
workers for better living and working conditions.
Provincial administrator Mamodula Kgabo called on employers
to accept the demands and for government to further research the conditions of
Principal provincial inspector Jacques Mostert said the N1
was closed at De Doorns, the epicentre of protest action.
He said motorists would have to take the Orchards offramp to
get to De Doorns.
On Wednesday morning, there were reports of stones being
thrown at cars by protesters in Wolseley.
Mostert said no casualties were reported.
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