Namibia Digital Repository

Contract Labour System and Farm Labourers’ Experiences in Pre-Independent Namibia: Historical Reflections, Perspectives and Lessons

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Title

Contract Labour System and Farm Labourers’ Experiences in Pre-Independent Namibia: Historical Reflections, Perspectives and Lessons

Description

"This paper centrally uses the recorded oral interviews of former contract labourers from the Kavango in northeast Namibia, supplemented with archival sources from the National Archives of Namibia (NAN) and written sources to reflect on the experiences of farm labourers under the contract labour system during the South African colonial period. The paper explores journeys to and from the farms, the living and farm work experiences and farm workers’ perception of their experiences under the contract labour system. The aim is to provide a historical basis to extract lessons to understand the current challenges presented by farm labour practices in postcolonial Namibia where the plights of farm workers remains a pertinent and persistent labour issue. The paper points that the paradigm of exploitation, suppression and entrapment under the contract labour system remain dominant in the narratives of former farm labourers. Furthermore, many farm labourers viewed their mistreatment under the contract labour system as colonial exploitation at its worst as the wages were too low. Although many of them extended their contracts in the hope to accumulate more money to improve their social and economic conditions, this remained an everlasting hope and a permanent failure."

Creator

Kletus Likuwa

Publisher

Basler Afrika Bibliographien

Date

2014

Contributor

Bernard C. Moore

Rights

© The author © Basler Afrika Bibliographien 2014

Format

PDF

Language

English

Type

Working Paper

Files

Citation

Kletus Likuwa, “Contract Labour System and Farm Labourers’ Experiences in Pre-Independent Namibia: Historical Reflections, Perspectives and Lessons,” Namibia Digital Repository, accessed November 16, 2018, http://namibia.leadr.msu.edu/items/show/213.

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