Cosatu pledges to fight for farmworkers

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The Congress of South African Trade Unions (Cosatu) says it is seeking a proper land deal for farm workers across the country.

The trade union federation met with the community of Grabouw in the Western Cape on Saturday to lend its support to farm workers who want to negotiate for land ownership, on the farms they are working.

The trade union says it wants to give life to the topical but contentious expropriation without compensation clause. The union plans to negotiate on behalf of workers, with farm owners, for a 50/50 ownership deal. Cosatu’s Tony Ehrenreich says farm-owners have to be part of the deal.

“We won’t be radical and ridiculous. We will find expropriation without compensation in a way that advances equity and food security.”

Farmworker David Tieties says they have long been waiting for a slice of the pie.

“My dream is to have something for myself and my children.”

The negotiations between farm workers and farmer owners, will be around joint decisions and joint control.

Ehrenreich says this is the model for the future.

“We will find a workable solution. We don’t want to do things that will destroy the country. But if we don’t address land reform, that will destroy the country.”

Cosatu says it will be going from farm to farm across the country to enter into discussions with farm owners.