De Doorns - Rubber bullets were fired on Thursday during on-going clashes between police and striking farmworkers in De Doorns, in the Western Cape.

Thousands of protesting workers taunted the police, pelting them with rocks.

The Bawsi Agricultural Workers' Union of SA (Bawusa) claimed nine people had been injured by rubber bullets since the strike resumed on Wednesday.

“Pat Marran, the ANC Boland chairman, was taken to hospital after being shot by private security,” said Bawusa general secretary Nosey Pieterse.

Pieterse said close to 6000 workers were on strike in De Doorns. Protests were also taking place in Grabouw and Wolseley.

The N1 highway at De Doorns was still closed to traffic on Thursday.

On Wednesday, Lt-Col Andre Traut said 44 people had been arrested.

Workers went on strike last year, demanding that their daily wages be increased from R69 to R150, and a coherent land reform programme.

At least two people were killed in protests between August 27 and December 4.

The strike was suspended following an undertaking that negotiations would continue between workers' representatives and individual farmers, but this proved unsuccessful. - Sapa