The strike is a manifestation of the power of workers to resist poverty and exploitation under capitalism and it requires working class solidarity to be won! This solidarity is being called for through a PUBLIC BOYCOTT OF ALL CLOVER PRODUCTS.
In 2019, Clover was bought out by MILCO Consortium, which is led by racist, imperialist Israel’s top manufacturer and distributor of beverages, Central Bottling Company (CBC) for R4 800 000 000!
R4.8 BILLION, yet workers are having to fight against wage slashes, retrenchments, factory closures and for decent working conditions that don’t see them:
All of this for earnings that fall so far below a living wage, workers can barely survive!
Clover is a Multibillion Rand Company and the biggest employer in the Dairy Industry in South Africa, employing approximately 9000 workers. We reject the brutalities of Clover, seemingly intent on destroying the lives and bodies of workers for profit, recklessly continuing poverty wages, and endlessly repeating its history of vicious, relentless attacks against the rights of all workers in South Africa!
On the 22nd of November 2021, Clover workers organised under GIWUSA and the Food and Allied Workers Union (FAWU) embarked on indefinite strike action against austerity, retrenchments, wage cuts and the MILCO/CBC take-over of Clover. More than four months later, the strike is ongoing, with Clover stubbornly and arrogantly refusing to meet the demands of striking workers.
We are calling for the nationalisation of Clover under democratic control and management of workers, communities and consumers. In doing so, we will defend jobs, ensure decent wages and conditions for workers, and affordable, quality dairy products for starving and poor communities.
On the 21st of December 2021, the Palestine Solidarity Alliance published a statement in the Daily Vox in support of striking Clover Workers. Below are excerpts from the statement:
"The plight of striking workers and the Palestinian masses are sadistically entwined in the merciless arms of colonial occupiers. Now is the time to stand together by supporting the demands of striking workers..." "Demands for better wages and working conditions are demands for families to have food on the table, spend quality time together, and dignified living conditions. Demands against factory closures are demands to restructure urban-peripheral relations in ways that do not leave former Bantustans as sites of surplus labour and extraction. The demand to nationalise MILCO is a demand for the South African government to step in to provide food security, employment, and dignity to a country with more than half its population below the poverty line and record levels of unemployment. It is a demand to kick Apartheid off its shores"
MILCO/CBC’s disinvestment from Clover
The nationalisation of Clover under democratic worker control
The reinstatement of all retrenched workers and an immediate halt to all planned retrenchments
Scrap and withdraw all of the R300 million austerity measures
A 10% wage increase across the board, or a R2 000 wage adjustment, whichever is greater
For the company to contribute 100% towards Medical Aid
For voluntary work on Sundays and public holidays to be paid at double time
A total restructuring of the Clover Provident Fund
All labour broker employees must be made permanent
Five hour merchandisers must be scrapped and these positions must be converted to full time. Merchandisers who work six days a week, must get one day off per month
Relevant salary grading
The following urgent allowances:
The #CloverStrike must be re-inforced by principled solidarity from the broader working classes, if the workers of Clover are to triumph over the exploitative, ruthless corporation. Members of the public are encouraged to display their solidarity by:
Striking Clover workers flocked the main entrance at the head office. Clad in their red union T-shirts, they picketed and sang while heavily armed security guards manned the gates and police vans parked on the side of the road.View Article
They have accused the dairy giant of stalling before it called an ambulance when striking workers were kidnapped and beaten for hours outside Clover’s premises in Clayville in Olifantsfontein, Gauteng – in full view of the company’s management – on Monday.View Article
One worker has been in hospital since Monday. Clover workers have been on strike since November.View Article
Unions and Palestinian solidarity organizations have escalated actions calling for the South African government to disinvest from Clover the Milco consortium, which is majority-owned by an Israeli company operating in occupied territories of Palestine.View Article
The 13th cheque bonuses were due to be paid on January 14 as ordered by the Commission for Conciliation, Mediation and Arbitration (CCMA) last Monday.View Article
The dairy company wants to retrench workers, move to a 12-hour day six days a week and ignore public holidays. Unions also fear it will close factories and pivot to distributing Israeli products.View Article