ID: Ehrenreich insensitive

2013-01-09 14:45
Tony Ehrenreich

Tony Ehrenreich

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Johannesburg - Western Cape Congress of SA Trade Unions (Cosatu) secretary Tony Ehrenreich is inconsiderate and insensitive for encouraging farmworkers to go on strike, Independent Democrats MPL Rodney Lentit said on Wednesday.

"It is blatant exploitation of farmworkers that Tony Ehrenreich encourages these farm strikes at the start of the year, when finances are tight and workers have to compensate for various commitments, especially school fees and debt incurred over the festive season," he said in a statement.

"This is nothing but cheap, political window-dressing at the expense of the poor. The last thing any worker needs is to start the year without having earned a wage or salary when the rest of the country is recovering from festive spending."

Ehrenreich said he could not respond to the allegations because they were not based on facts.

"Doesn't he [Lentit] read the papers? All Cosatu is doing is assisting the farmworkers," he said.

"I can't respond to something like that, because there isn't a party like that [the ID], that exists in real terms."

Parties merging

In 2010, ID leader Patricia de Lille agreed to merge the party with the Democratic Alliance. The parties will be fully merged by 2014.

Lentit said he visited farms in Porterville and the "surrounding areas" on Wednesday morning, and saw that farmworkers were back at their jobs.

"For those few workers who have been encouraged by Tony Ehrenreich to strike, I plead with them to do so in a peaceful and law-abiding way," he said.

The strike was suspended last year following an undertaking that negotiations would continue between workers' representatives and individual farmers. However, this proved unsuccessful.

Workers wanted wages of R150 a day and a coherent land reform programme.

At least two people were killed during protests in farming areas between August 27 and December 4.

Arrests made

Lentit said those farm owners whose annual turnover was significantly higher than others needed to compensate their workers.

"It is an issue that needs to be addressed with urgency as not all farmers are categorised, or can afford to pay their workers more than the basic or standard wage," he said.

Around 50 people were arrested on Wednesday when renewed farm strikes turned violent.

Lieutenant Colonel Andre Traut said riot police had been deployed to contain the situation in the Boland farming town of De Doorns.

"We are taking action, and arrests are being effected," Traut said, adding that "in the region of 50" people had been detained since the protests began early on Wednesday.

Protesters stoned cars, prompting the police to close roads. The N1 was closed outside De Doorns, forcing motorists to use alternative routes.

Farmworkers said they would not return to the vineyards on Wednesday afternoon as the situation had become too volatile.
Read more on:    cosatu  |  id  |  tony ehrenreich  |  cape town  |  farmworker protests

Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24


LOL treadmill fail!

Watch this hilarious clip! We think this man should rather be running outside this summer!


I love summer.24

Google’s top searches of 2014
10 of the strangest Christmas traditions around the world
2014's best drone videos
7 drinks you need to make this party season

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go! - shop online today

Up to 50% off on outdoor gear

Save on chairs, blankets, cooler bags, umbrellas and more. Shop now!

Save on Samsung

Cameras, mobile phones, TVs, Tablets and more. While stocks last. Shop now!

15% off LEGO

Save 15% when you buy 2 or more Lego toys. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Grand Theft Auto 5

Now available on PS4, Xbox One and PC from R649. Buy now!

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25


Any chance to explore the distant shores of things yet to be found will fascinate you. The challenge is dealing with the more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.