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Durban - More than 100 groomsmen have gone on strike at the Summerveld Training Centre near Hillcrest on Monday.

According to the Highway Mail the groomsmen staged a strike early on Wednesday morning.

While some chanted and sang songs outside representatives went into meetings with management.

The groomsmen did not want to speak to the media until after their representatives had met with management.

The strike, just days before the Vodacom Durban July comes after working conditions and pay of the groomsmen were highlighted by the Daily News.

Many racehorses, some of whom will compete in the Vodacom Durban July are kept at Summerveld.

In June, the Daily News reported that some groomsmen were paid as little as R800 a fortnight.

Groomsmen who spoke to the newspaper said that 750 people living in the staff quarters at Summerveld with four people sharing one room.

Michel Nairac, the chief executive of Gold Circle, told the Daily News that they had not received any complaints from grooms over the past few years.

Tony Rivalland, spokesperson for the KwaZulu-Natal Trainers’ Association, said it was “a blatant lie” that grooms were receiving poor salaries.

“There is not one groom I know of who only earns R2000. If there is, I will give them R2000 for free,” he said.

Rivalland said they aligned themselves strictly with working conditions set by the agricultural sector, which they fall under, and that most grooms were members of unions.

Daily News