Picture: 123RF/LUKAS GOJDA
Picture: 123RF/LUKAS GOJDA

Parliament’s labour portfolio committee said it was "not impressed" with the living conditions of horse grooms at the Randjesfontein Race Course in Midrand‚ Gauteng.

The committee visited the North Rand Training Centre at the race course on Tuesday.

Grooms went on strike at the Randjesfontein Race Course in June‚ led by the EFF.

According to a statement issued by the portfolio committee on Tuesday‚ its members interacted with management of Phumelela Gaming‚ one independent horse trainer‚ as well as horse grooms.

"During an interaction with the horse grooms in their hostels‚ the committee heard about reports of long working hours‚ and failure to comply with the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) legislation‚ allegedly by horse trainers subcontracted to Phumelela‚" the statement read.

"The committee also witnessed appalling living conditions in the grooms’ hostels‚ where four to five men share one small room and cook on gas stoves located outside their rooms."

The committee also noted with concern the absence of healthcare services on the Randjesfontein estate.

The committee has formally requested the department of labour to conduct "thorough inspections in the entire horseracing industry to ensure compliance with the laws of the country".