Bawusa to continue farm inspections

The farmworkers’ union says the relationship between itself and farmers is improving.

Farmworkers’ union Bawusa says the relationship between itself and farmers is improving. Picture: AFP.

CAPE TOWN - The Building and Allied Workers Union of South Africa (Bawusa) says its communication with some farmers in the Western Cape is improving.

Several farm areas were rocked by violent industrial action when farmworkers embarked on wage protests late last year and early this year.

Striking workers demanded a daily wage increase of R150, compared to the R69 many claimed to be earning in accordance with the national sectoral determination for minimum wages in the farming sector.

It's been a little more than a year since the uprising and Bawusa is doing a survey of 152 farms.

The union's Nosey Pieterse says he will be meeting with some farmers this week.

"It's three groups of farmers that we will be meeting this week but I am confident that this will be great because these farmers come from huge organisations."

He is confident progress will made.

"The momentum is going and there are more and more people who want to do the right thing, who want to cooperate and want a situation where there is stability and certainty in the agricultural sector."

Bawusa also says while relations between it and some farmers are improving, some of its union members have not been called back to work and are now unemployed.

Pieterse claims some farmers are not employing locals but more foreigners following last year's violent strikes.

"In De Doorns specifically more than 90 percent of the people are unemployed. They've not been re-employed at the start of this season and instead the farmers have employed Zimbabweans and people from neighbouring towns."