Seasonal farmworkers plead with Labour Minister to assist with UIF concerns

Minister Thulas Nxesi joined a seasonal workers meeting in De Doorns via video. The workers laid bare their frustrations with the UIF office, asking for more resources so they could get what's due to them.


CAPE TOWN - Farmworkers have raised concern over access the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF).

On Thursday the Women on Farms Project hosted a UIF Indaba in Worcester. Over 200 people from across the province gathered at a local hall and Employment and Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi joined via video.

Farmworkers have highlighted issues such as long waiting periods to access UIF benefits as well as a lack of staff and resources at some UIF offices.

One seasonal farmworker from De Doorns said they were serviced by only three staff members who also saw to other towns.

“Please minister, can you act, because on De Doorns it’s overflowing with seasonal workers, that is the place with seasonal workers, ” said one of the affected workers.


Danielle de Witt from the Commercial, Stevedoring, Agricultural and Allied Workers Union said there'd been no assistance from the department in Robertson since last year.

“What must we do now? Our people are suffering, our people hungry and they are suffering a lot and nobody gives a damn. I am putting it like it is about the UIF,” exclaimed de Witt.

Labour Minister Thulas Nxesi acknowledged that agricultural areas needed more staff at labour centres.

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