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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Privatisation and Labour Militancy: The Case of Cameroon's Tea Estates
Author:Konings, PietISNI
Periodical:Journal of Contemporary African Studies
Geographic term:Cameroon
labour conflicts
women workers
Agriculture, Natural Resources and the Environment
Development and Technology
Labor and Employment
Women's Issues
Politics and Government
External link:https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/02589000701782653
Abstract:Privatization has become a cornerstone of the neoliberal reforms imposed by Western donors and creditors upon African States. This study of the privatization of the CDC (Cameroon Development Corporation) tea estates in Anglophone Cameroon seems to largely confirm widespread evidence that both African governments and civil-society organizations have for various reasons been inclined to oppose externally imposed privatization schemes. However, it shows that the most militant opposition has come from the Tole Tea Estate's predominantly female labour force. The article first provides evidence that the proposed privatization of the CDC in 1994 was regularly postponed because of fierce opposition by various civil-society organizations and that its eventual privatization in 2002 became highly controversial. It then analyses Tole Tea Estate's labour force and its actions during the economic crisis prior to privatization. The final section describes the growing militancy of Tole Tea Estate workers following a dramatic deterioration in their conditions of service in the aftermath of the estate's privatization. This resulted in work coming to a complete standstill at the estate for a large part of 2006. In the absence of any public support from regional civil-society organizations, the militant actions of the estate workers were bound to remain local expressions of anger. Bibliogr., notes, ref., sum. [ASC Leiden abstract]