Today's Labour News

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farming thumb medium80 84The Star reports that over 5,000 assistant agricultural practitioners (AAP) left hanging after the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development terminated the graduates' contracts, are hoping that the President will come to their aid and reinstate them to their jobs.

The department developed a program for three months to appoint 10,000 unemployed agricultural graduates as AAPs to assist the government in reaching a target of one extension officer to 250 farmers. The 5,000 graduates were to be recruited in the first cycle of 2022/23 financial year and placed in different provinces and deployed with various agricultural institutions in the sector. These included the Agricultural Research Council (ARC), the Association of Veterinary and Crop Associations of SA, Grain SA, the SA Sugar Research Institute and the SA African Poultry Association, among others. However, during the course of July 2023, the AAPs nationwide were retrenched by the agricultural department, which cited budget constraints. Recently, the graduates once again marched to the offices of the department in Pretoria as well as taking their plea to the President at the Union Buildings. The graduates stressed that with the finance minister having released the budget for the sector, they too had to be considered as many were struggling to make ends meet. Their demands called for the immediate reinstatement of graduates and for them to be employed permanently. Their memorandum was accepted by Phil Mahlangu, communications manager at the Presidency, who said they too were concerned about the graduates’ plight.

  • Read the full original of the report in the above regard by Goitsemang Matlhabe at The Star

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