Western Cape emergency services at the scene of a crash that occurred on the R321 heading towards Theewaterskloof Dam, near Villiersdorp, on Tuesday. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane / African News Agency (ANA)
Western Cape emergency services at the scene of a crash that occurred on the R321 heading towards Theewaterskloof Dam, near Villiersdorp, on Tuesday. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane / African News Agency (ANA)

Minister Thoko Didiza visits families of farm workers killed in Western Cape crash

By Jonisayi Maromo Time of article published Sep 9, 2021

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Pretoria – Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development Minister Thoko Didiza on Thursday visited the families of farmworkers who died in a "horrific" accident near Villiersdorp in the Western Cape.

Accompanied by her deputy, Mcebisi Skwatsha, and other officials, Didiza went to offer condolences to the Dlamini and Mbathane families who both lost their fathers in the accident.

Didiza said even though the mode of transport had not been blamed for the accident, the issue of safe transport of farm workers continued to be a sore point.

“As government we continue to work on improving legislation in terms of transportation of farm workers. Although in this case the mode of transport was not an issue as it was a permitted one in law, we encourage all farm owners to improve on how they transport their workers,” said Didiza.

On Tuesday morning a vehicle carrying 57 farm workers from Chiltern farm in Villiersdorp was involved in an accident and two farm workers lost their lives. Three people in another vehicle also died.

Officials from the provincial Department of Agriculture, together with local councillors, are providing assistance to the bereaved families and injured farm workers.

The minister also appealed to farm workers and farmers get vaccinated for Covid-19.

“I wish to urge farm workers and farm owners who have not yet taken their vaccine to do so.This will go a long way in assisting the country and industry back to normality,” she said.

“Agriculture as an essential service will benefit a lot if all in the sector are fully vaccinated.”

IOL

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