Unions to visit Komsberg striking workers

02 Feb 2016 19:40pm
KEETMANSHOOP, 2 FEB (NAMPA) – The National Union of Namibian Workers (NUNW) and the Namibia Farm Workers’ Union (Nafwu) are meeting with grape farm workers at Komsberg in the //Kharas Region on Wednesday to address problems workers experience.
The workers are on strike since Monday, demanding that general manager of Komsberg Farming Jannie Thiart “pack and return to South Africa”.
The grape company, which operates under a loan from AgriBank, is currently under liquidation.
The workers accuse Thiart of mistreatment and disrespect.
An organiser of the strike, Justinus Linyando told Nampa on Tuesday that Thiart mistreats workers and ignores country labour laws.
“A few years ago, an assault case was opened against him at the Ariamsvlei Police Station after he hit a security guard with a torch,” Linyando alleged.
Nampa was unable to verify this with the police on Tuesday.
Linyando further said that Thiart has long been disrespectful and verbally abusive towards workers.
“Here, workers have no freedom of speech,” he also said.
The workers continued their strike on Tuesday and have vowed not to return until Thiart is gone.
Thiart refused to speak to the media in the aftermath of the recent flood, dismissing all allegations against him.
The company’s telephone went unanswered on Tuesday.
Kakuru Diyeve, 3, was swept away in floods that hit the farm nearly two weeks ago. He is yet to be found.
The floods also destroyed reed houses workers use as accommodation on the farm near Ariamsvlei.