Agri SA: Let farmers deal with workers

2012-11-16 11:26

Cape Town - Farmers whose workers are on an illegal strike across the Western Cape should be allowed to decide on the most appropriate action against them, Agri SA said on Friday.

"Lawlessness and criminal activities cannot be tolerated and the culprits must be held accountable via normal prosecution processes," Agri SA labour committee chairperson Anton Rabe said.

Employers should decide on what to do with striking workers, as the protest was not protected under the Labour Relations Act.

"Agri SA has also not agreed that no disciplinary action should be taken against striking workers and agitators."

Protesters looted shops and set buildings alight in Swellendam in the Hex River Valley in the Western Cape, police said on Friday.

"We have received reports of unrest and torching of businesses, but the situation is under control," Western Cape police spokesperson Lt-Gen Andre Traut said.

He said police officers were monitoring the situation.

According to news reports on Friday morning, roads in the area, including the N2, had been blockaded with rocks and burning tyres. eNews Channel Africa (eNCA) reported that shops were being set alight, protesters looted a bottle store and a butchery was torched in Swellendam on Thursday night and Friday morning.

Rabe welcomed discussions aimed at bringing the strike to an end.

"We are committed to constructive discussions that will ensure the profitability and sustainability of commercial agriculture in the long term."

He said interested parties had to work together to restore business confidence and peace of mind so the country's image could be restored.

  • john.dough.5836711 - 2012-11-16 11:45

    On Etv news last night they interviewed a farmer who paid his workers R21 per hour which is a lot more than the recommended minimum wage of R7.71. His workers set fire to his farming equipment even though they are earning more than R150 a day. Pure thuggery. If I was him I would now re-employ the workers at the minimum wage of R7.71 until I had recovered my losses and if they don't like it they can get lost.

      brad.ken.18 - 2012-11-16 11:54

      Just a question. Did he actually say they were HIS workers? Or bussed in outsider tsotsi's>

      kenpeg.dawson - 2012-11-16 11:57

      John, it is not fair to the farmer who is loyal to his staff. If you want loyalty in return on you invested loyalty GET A DOG.

      brad.ken.18 - 2012-11-16 12:31

      PROOF of the COWARDS these filthy cANCer mongrels are! … #farmprotest … #farmprotest … #farmprotest

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-11-16 12:41

      John and kagiso. Du Toit is a big fruit packer/provider as well. We talking of farming as well as industrial. There are different job functions in his organization and therefore different levels of jobs. I think you guys must see it from that point, but yes, he apparently pays better and was "stabbed in the back" for it.

      heinrich.klein.37 - 2012-11-16 13:04

      In the Theewaterskloof area, a pamphlet being distributed suggests that the ANC is paying a select number of agitators to perform specific tasks of an unconfirmed nature. The pamphlet thanks those who took part in the protest and informs them that they may take their ID books along to collect R150 from a list of five people.

      philip.harris.967 - 2012-11-16 16:49

      R21 per hour is peanuts. Slave Labour. We south africans are simply going to have to get used to Black people earning living wages for hard labour. So what if wine is more expensive ........tough.

      mark.a.fysh - 2012-11-16 17:20

      Tough, you say, JohnDough - we must simply pay more for wine. I take it you apply the same reasoning to basic food, such as vegges, grain and meat as well? Flawed reasoning,otherwise. How will the poor eat, John?

  • gary.desousa.7 - 2012-11-16 11:46

    Agri you are correct,the law must take its course,not some commie minister looking for votes siding with the looters and criminals,maybe thats her background. No civilzed country allows this to continue. Farmers must be consulted about increases ,or is this a marxist state already? Im just fed up with all this political interference generally.

      philip.harris.967 - 2012-11-16 16:50

      Gary , "civilised" countries dont allow slave wages.

  • johan.vanheerden.12 - 2012-11-16 11:50

    But they are not farmworkers, people set up by Cosatu and ANC to disrupt and destoy after THEY agreed on the minimum wage. Does Tony mention that when he asks for violence and burning? Farmers in lose/loze situation

  • kenpeg.dawson - 2012-11-16 11:55

    This is a lot deeper than labour unrest. Somebody somewhere is inciting this disobedience. cANCer is digging its own grave by standing with the thugs, mugs and any other appropiate name.

      angela.nair.3 - 2012-11-16 14:50

      They are being incited - who can forget that statement "We will make the Cape ungovernable" - They could not govern it the first time nor will they be abe to at any other time. These workers dont see that they are being used as fodder.... And who decided the minimum wage... Them!

      philip.harris.967 - 2012-11-16 16:51

      kenpeg ..dont you see the elephant in the room? Why does someone HAVE to incite people who are being paid peanuts?

  • Montagnes.Bleues - 2012-11-16 11:56

    Hang on, hang on! I have just discovered that it's possible to setup HEE (Human Economic Empowerment) contracts and can provide busses and taxi's even tot he eastern refugee lands and planes starting from R4million per/hour as in accordance with this type of BEE contract. only clause is "NO WINE" as luggage because that has been sanctioned by ANC boycott via the elitist unions who are suddenly scavenging the area like crows and vultures.

  • fef.gericke - 2012-11-16 12:00

    protesters looted a bottle store...sigh.

  • mandla.thwala.10 - 2012-11-16 12:01

    Well said Mr, but you dont say whow are you going to deal with those farmers who are enriching themselves by paying slave salaries R65 is the price of biltong that you eat everyday but u expect that to be a living wage for a worker?

      kenpeg.dawson - 2012-11-16 12:08

      Twatla, STFU and GTFU and FFO

      kenpeg.dawson - 2012-11-16 12:23

      That means grow up, shut up and off.

      DuToitCoetzee - 2012-11-16 12:47

      Not saying that it is enough or too little, but just like to mention the correct amounts the gov. previously decided on. R 69.?? to R 75.00. A lot of people quote so many different amounts while every 2nd article telling us what it is.

  • michael.konings.7 - 2012-11-16 12:03

    Hi, There is not such a thing as illigale strike. Workers must receive a decent salary, not to be exploited by their employers mwho make millions every time.

      gary.desousa.7 - 2012-11-16 12:11

      This is also to mandlas comment. The minimum wage determination was set in Feb this year by the DEPT OF LABOUR in conjunction with COSATU both who profess to be on the side of the workers and set for 3 yrs and made law. Just like the minimum wages for domestics. Now where in that does it say farmers must not make profit and enrich themselves,thats just commie/socialist rubbish

      rowan.maulson - 2012-11-16 12:13

      It is commonly known as an illegal strike... Its correct term is an unprotected strike, so the farmers are legally allowed to serve the workers with disciplinary notices and subject them to disciplinary hearings and such.

      jaco.kriek.5 - 2012-11-16 12:50

      Michael, you are as clueless as the people burning down their own bread and butter.... We live in a country where job creation is blocked by minimum wages and taxes. If you want a country to thrive, support your farmers so that your food inflation stays low. thats the best way to support the poor, can't understand why the government don't get that....

  • tresor.mpika.9 - 2012-11-16 12:06

    Let farmers deal with workers so that they can continue to exploit them. God forbid!!

      riekie.koekemoer.3 - 2012-11-16 12:10

      Let them then find employment elswhere!

      rowan.maulson - 2012-11-16 12:14

      Do you even have a clue about how the workers are treated by the farmers?

      carryn.whittaker - 2012-11-16 13:30

      If the workers are exploited it means that our government is incompetent. If govt is not protecting the interests of workers in general then we need a new government. Our government must stop coming here with those unhelpful tendencies. Bloody agents!!! Viva democracy viva!

  • ronnie.duplessis.7 - 2012-11-16 12:11

    Once again this is a politically motivated attack on the Western Cape, the ANC vowed that they will make the Cape ungovernable, isn’t this exactly what is happening, it is not just the farmers that need to take action but every single one of us living in the Western Cape.

      brian.connell.18 - 2012-11-16 12:17

      A suggestion to ALL - black, white, executive, labourer ..... read a book by Ayn Rand called 'Atlas Shrugged'. Then sit back and think about things for a while..........

      kenpeg.dawson - 2012-11-16 12:22

      Every one of us NON-cANCer members in the whole country must guard against this.

  • francois.louwrens - 2012-11-16 12:42

    Volgens die berig is Swellendam in die Hexriviervallei. Iemand kort 'n geografieles .......

  • pamela.jacobs.509 - 2012-11-16 12:46

    Please listen to Agri SA for a change, these guys know what they are talking about...

  • msturmair - 2012-11-16 13:07

    u know whats locally the muncipality gave tender to mr B and he employed workers and only paid them R40 per day (6am - 6pm)and to this day they have not received all their wages, another incident mr B employed local lads to go work on a project for 3mths, the owner paid mr B all money and guess what he dissappeared with all the money and let lads is wrong with the people, quick to point fingers to white people, when their own race is not doing right.....

  • Warren Mudge - 2012-11-16 13:09

    is it true that the minister wants to abuse her powers and recommend to the NPA to drop all charges against those arrested for violent and criminal activity during these illegal/unprotected strikes? how come no-one has queried this blatant arrogant political intervention. If this is so and does happen then we must conclude that the NPA is not independent and therefore must conclude that there was political intervention in the Zuma case and all other politically sensitive case where charges just get withdrawn under a cloud of doubt. I'm telling you now that this cANCer has a hidden ZANU PF agenda.

  • hitting.thefan - 2012-11-16 13:16

    I hope these farmers shows the mines how it should be done! Fire them, they are placing your lively-hood and those of your workers in danger. You can not have such a work force. Let them go!!!

  • elsie.palmer.90 - 2012-11-16 13:31

    Those that give negative comments should be taught as what get done on the farm,, farmers have to buy tracktors and other machinery,, the have to pay for diesel,,,etc,,,etc... Fix up machinery when it is broken... Just sit back and think and calculate what the farmers has to pay,,,,,the more the farmer pays workers the more we will pay as simple as that,,,,,,and soon we will be digging up worm and eating leaves

      glors.phuti - 2012-11-18 08:04

      Elsie it is their responsibility to fix those belongs to them.they must anyway pay their workers.most of the time the farmers are doing absolutely nothing.

      glors.phuti - 2012-11-18 08:04

      Elsie it is their responsibility to fix those belongs to them.they must anyway pay their workers.most of the time the farmers are doing absolutely nothing.

  • muke.matshaba - 2012-11-16 13:48

    The only problem is that most black ppl hav dramatically failed on large scale farming,many goverment bought farms r dyfunctional since been given back to the ppl,in mzansi the problem is a Gab between rich n poor people plus the transparency of those at the top.

  • lidia.d.ramos - 2012-11-16 13:56

    Funny how this goes when municipalities pay wages of R60 a day and workers work from 6-6..they not doing any wrong...Gov just want to blame others for their shortfall...and by the way not all farms belong to white people..farms were taken from the whites and given to the blacks in Gov...I believe everyone needs to be paid correctly no matter who or what u are..R150 is correct..I'd say..

  • nestor.sakelliou - 2012-11-16 14:10

    I think all these striking workers should have a salary cut until all the damage caused by striking protesters is financially covered. It's one thing to strike but another thing to destroy someone's business

  • coenraad.vaneeden.5 - 2012-11-16 19:23

    Ancccccccccc is behind this

  • Genesistt - 2012-11-17 12:26

    I still want to know why the people looting and vandalising and burning down building aren't getting arrested. They're breaking the law, but because they're striking it's ok???

      marlon.rudolph.9 - 2013-01-18 13:11

      it has been reported 180 ppl were arested

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