Dept provides aid for Cape farmworkers

2012-12-12 18:53
Tina Joemat-Pettersson (Picture: Beeld)

Tina Joemat-Pettersson (Picture: Beeld)

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Johannesburg - Western Cape farmworkers received food and other aid after calls by Agriculture Minister Tina Joemat-Pettersson, her office said on Wednesday.

Farm workers in the province were without food as they had not been paid due to the strike, Pettersson's spokesperson Palesa Mokomele said in a statement.

"There has been an awakening by retailers, including Tiger Brands, Food Bank SA, and Hortgro to bring hope to the thousands of farmworkers who would otherwise face a bleak Christmas."

Table grape harvesters started protesting in De Doorns at the start of November for R150 per day and improved living conditions.

Most earned between R69 and R75 a day. The protests soon spread to 15 other towns, leading to violence and two deaths, before the strike ended on 4 December.

The department had made money available for basic food and the services of a logistics company to manage the delivery of food and aid.

Families receiving donations would be allocated a coupon with an identification number, which allowed the logistics company to keep track of who has received what aid package.

"Each package includes basic foodstuffs, like maize meal, rice, flour, sugar, cooking oil, and other goods," said Mokomele.

"The intention of this intervention is to spread the social relief to areas that were affected by the protests."

The department called on the public to extend themselves this Christmas and beyond by donating food, aid, and back-to-school goods, such as books and stationary.

Goods can be dropped at the Food Bank SA warehouse in Epping, Cape Town, between 08:30 and 15:30 Monday to Friday.

- SAPA
Read more on:    tina joemat-pettersson  |  cape town  |  agriculture  |  labour  |  farmworker protests
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