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Farmers encouraged to employ the local work seekers before looking outside the country

by lloyd last modified 2018-11-08 17:16


Following a number of cross border work permits applications received from the farming sector, the Department of Labour through the Public Employment Services (PES) unit held a multi-stakeholder engagement session aimed at seeking advices and ideas on how the local work seekers can be encouraged to see the values that the sector has and be absorbed in the sector. The session was held in Brits, in the North West Province .

Addressing the session, PES Director: Labour Migration and Registration of Opportunities and Placements Ms Mantombi Bobane said that the Department was concerned with the number of cross border work permit applications received from the farming sector.

While the country is faced with unemployment, poverty and inequality challenges. Ms Bobani encouraged the farmers to test the local work seeker market as it is part of the requirements for applications of cross boarder work permits.

“Among others, the employer needs to provide evidence that indeed, the local market has been tested, this evidence includes proof that the opportunities that are available were advertised in a national newspaper with farmers exempted to use the services of local newspapers, and local community leaders engaged to assist in getting the required workforce” said Ms Bobani.

This stakeholder engagement session was attended by different government departments and they all shared the same sentiments requesting that:

·          Agriculture to be part of the educational curriculum from lower grades

·          Training be provided to farm workers

·          Border controls be tightened to reduce a number of undocumented nationals from entering the country as they find their way into sectors such as farming for employment

·          Farmers to engage the Department of Labour to assist with acquiring the needed workforce through the Employment System of South Africa (ESSA) that is administered by the Department of Labour through the PES unit.

This stakeholder engagement session was preceded by meetings with work seekers from Bethanie, Makolokwe, Modikwe and Berseba villages where the Department was trying to get their views on taking opportunities within the farming sector. The Department wanted to establish if there was an interest or any other challenges that are discouraging them from taking up job offers form the Agricultural sector.

From these meetings, a number of challenges were raised by the work seekers that included among others non-registration of employees as Labour Laws dictates, monitoring of working hours and safety issues in the sector. The overall feedback from the work seekers was that they are willing to accept opportunities should they arise.

In closing the session, the Chief Director Provincial Operations, Mr Andile Makapela encouraged the Farmers to use the local labour and to take advantage of the recruitment and placement services offered for free by the Department.


For enquiries:


Botsang Huma

Provincial Communication Officer

Department of Labour: North West

082 4977438


Issued by:


Teboho Thejane

Departmental Spokesperson

082 697 0694

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