Police fire rubber bullets at striking farm workers

De Doorns – The SA police service fired rubber bullets to repel hundreds of rock-throwing farm workers during a strike for higher wages, during a second day of violence in the normally calm and picturesque wine lands.

Police and farm workers fought running battles along the N1 motorway, which links Cape Town and Johannesburg, halting traffic and shutting off a number of towns and villages.

Protesters near De Doorns set barricades on fire and threw rocks, stones and debris at police vehicles, prompting officers in riot gear to respond with a volley of rubber bullets and tear gas.

Protesters were dispersed but rapidly regathered, in a game of cat and mouse that has rocked Africa’s main wine producing region.

Farm workers in the Western Cape yesterday launched a fresh round of industrial action to press for the doubling of their wages.

Thousands of labourers have downed tools after wage negotiations collapsed following last month’s work stoppage that left two people dead.

Workers who pick and pack fruit on farms in the picturesque region are demanding a wage hike from R69 to R150 a day.

The latest bout of industrial action follows unprecedented work stoppages in the country’s mining industry that turned violent late last year leaving more than 50 people dead.

Of those killed, 34 were shot dead by police in one day in scenes reminiscent of apartheid police brutality.

We live in a world where facts and fiction get blurred
In times of uncertainty you need journalism you can trust. For only R75 per month, you have access to a world of in-depth analyses, investigative journalism, top opinions and a range of features. Journalism strengthens democracy. Invest in the future today.
Subscribe to News24
Lockdown For
DAYS
HRS
MINS
Voting Booth
Would you choose to continue working from home after the coronavirus lockdown if given the option?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Yes, it's much better for me
40% - 7884 votes
No ways! I can't wait to get back to the office
12% - 2292 votes
A mixture of both would suit me best
48% - 9560 votes
Vote
USD/ZAR
14.19
(-0.2)
GBP/ZAR
19.50
(-0.1)
EUR/ZAR
16.98
(+0.2)
AUD/ZAR
10.99
(+0.0)
JPY/ZAR
0.13
(+0.1)
Gold
1,763.90
(+0.0)
Silver
25.89
(+0.2)
Platinum
1,202.50
(+0.5)
Brent Crude
66.94
(+0.5)
Palladium
2,753.17
(+0.3)
All Share
68,060
(+0.4)
Top 40
62,316
(+0.4)
Financial 15
12,368
(+0.2)
Industrial 25
88,785
(+0.2)
Resource 10
69,327
(+0.7)
All JSE data delayed by at least 15 minutes Iress logo