Plan to share farms with workers on track

2014-06-22 07:36
Wine's natural ingredient may not aid in longer life, researchers have found. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

Wine's natural ingredient may not aid in longer life, researchers have found. (Duncan Alfreds, News24)

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Johannesburg - Commercial agriculture stakeholders, including farmers, farm workers and trade unions, have until April next year to respond to Rural Development and Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwinti's policy proposals that could see farmers handing over 50% of their land to their workers.

According to the Sunday Times, Nkwinti said the land reform plan - which was published last week - was reflective of the ANC policy decision, through the Freedom Charter, to turn away from radical African nationalism and to embrace the concept that South Africa belongs to all who live in it - black and white - and that the land should be shared among those who work it.

AgriSA's deputy president Theo de Jager however said that organised agriculture would reject Nkinti’s proposals. He said the move could also lead to massive job losses as farmers could let workers go in a bid to ensure few workers on the farms.

According to the report, government would pay for the 50% share but the money would not go to the farmer. Instead it would go into an investment fund that would be used for reinvestment in the farm and to pay those who want to opt out of the arrangement

When the idea first surfaced in April, some stakeholders and political parties slammed the idea. At the time, the Freedom Front Plus said the idea was ill-considered. Spokesperson Pieter Mulder said the proposal would not resolve the land reform problems in the country, but would instead destroy food security in the country.

"When studying the proposals closely, it becomes clear that it originates from a minister and a department which has no understanding of the intricacies of modern commercial farming," Mulder said.

However, at the time, the Congress of SA Trade Unions in the Western Cape welcomed the idea of workers getting 50% stake in farms.
Read more on:    cosatu  |  agrisa  |  ff plus  |  anc  |  pieter mulder  |  theo de jager  |  gugile nkwinti  |  farms
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