Title page for ETD etd-11052012-115521


Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Moseki, Maleepile Felicity
Email maleepile.moseki@gmail.com
URN etd-11052012-115521
Document Title Migrating to South Africa : experiences of 'skilled' and 'unskilled' Lesotho workers
Degree MSocSci
Department Sociology
Supervisor
Advisor Name Title
Prof K Naidoo Supervisor
Keywords
  • Lesotho
  • skilled workers
  • unskilled workers
  • South Africa
  • Suid Afrika
  • geskoolde arbeiders
  • ongeskoolde arbeiders
Date 2012-04-23
Availability unrestricted
Abstract
Over the past decades, Lesotho has been a source of, primarily, unskilled migrant labour entering South Africa, with Basotho men working on the South African mines and Basotho women restricted to domestic work. This dissertation examines the experiences of both ‘skilled’ and ‘unskilled’ Lesotho migrants currently living in South Africa. The study aims to establish those factors that are influential in prompting Lesotho citizens to leave Lesotho for South Africa. Moreover, it probes differences and similarities with regard to the work patterns encountered by skilled and unskilled workers as well as establishes the impact which migration has had on the lives of migrants. The literature tends to suggest that skilled workers face fewer restrictions and receive better treatment from management and colleagues in companies, while unskilled workers, on the other hand, may be exposed to considerable harassment, exploitation and poor treatment. This study concurs with the evidence in the literature in finding that unskilled workers are at a greater disadvantage when entering the South African labour market as compared to skilled workers. Moreover, it would appear that skilled workers are benefiting more in terms of their jobs, and in having their expectations met than unskilled workers.

For the research participants in this study, xenophobia did not appear to be a serious factor, despite the fact that much public attention has been focused on the situation of foreign workers in South Africa. However, these workers from Lesotho highlighted racism as more of an obstacle than xenophobia. In addition, the study reiterates the popular findings that it is better job opportunities that remain the main motivation behind both skilled and unskilled workers migrating to South Africa with development, growth, training opportunities, mentoring, and interaction with more experienced colleagues also emerging as motivating factors.

The discourse of the research participants also revealed social networks to be influential in the acquiring and maintaining of jobs. The study illustrates the relevance of ‘dependency’ theory for building understanding of the reasons why ‘skilled’ and ‘unskilled’ workers persist in migrating to South Africa. Finally, migration remains the ‘coming of age’ for Lesotho migrants, impacting positively on both their lives as well as the lives of their families.

AFRIKAANS : Lesotho was tydens die afgelope paar dekades ʼn bron van ongeskoolde arbeid vir Suid-Afrika, waar manlike trekarbeiders gewoonlik in die mynwese werk en die vroulike trekarbeiders beperk is om betaalde huishoudsters te word. Hierdie dissertasie bestudeer die ervarings van ‘geskoolde’ en ‘ongeskoolde’ Lesotho trekarbeiders wat in Suid-Afrika woon. Die studie stel die faktore vas wat besluite rondom trekarbeid beïnvloed, veral díe wat die inwoners van Lesotho motiveer om hul land te verlaat om in Suid-Afrika te gaan werk. Die studie ondersoek boonop die verskille en ooreenkomste ten opsigte van werkspatrone wat geskoolde en ongeskoolde werkers teëkom. Dit stel ook vas wat die impak van trekarbeid op hierdie mense se lewens het. Die literatuur is geneig om voor te stel dat geskoolde arbeiders minder beperkinge ondervind en binne maatskappye beter behandel word deur bestuur en kollegas, terwyl ongeskoolde arbeiders aansienlike teistering en uitbuiting ervaar gepaard met swak behandeling. My studie stem ooreen met die literatuur – ek het gevind dat ongeskoolde arbeiders meer benadeel word as geskoolde arbeiders wat na Suid-Afrika migreer. Geskoolde arbeiders ervaar ook meer voordele ten opsigte van werk en hulle verwagtinge word verwesenlik. Deelnemers van hierdie navorsingsprojek het aangedui dat xenofobie nie ʼn ernstige faktoor was nie, al was daar baie publieke aandag gevestig op buitelandse arbeiders in Suid-Afrika. Vir die Lesotho arbeiders was rasisme ʼn groter struikelblok as xenofobie. Hierdie studie herhaal populêre bevindings dat daar beter werksmoontlikhede in Suid-Afrika is as in Lesotho, en dít is steeds die hoof motivering waarom geskoolde en ongeskoolde arbeiders daarheen migreer. Verdere motiverende redes was geïdentifiseer, naamlik: ontwikkeling, groei, opleidingsmoontlikhede, mentors, en interaksie met meer ervare kollegas. Die Lesotho arbeiders se besprekings het dit duidelik gemaak dat sosiale netwerke ‘n groot rol het in verband met werkwerwing en behouding daarvan. Hierdie studie illustreer die toepaslikheid van ‘afhanklikheidsteorie’ wat bydrae tot die begrip waarom geskoolde en ongeskoolde arbeiders na Suid-Afrika migreer. Laastens is migrasie steeds ʼn soort mylpaal vir Lesotho trekarbeiders en dit het ‘n positiewe impak op hul, en hul families se lewens.

Copyright © 2011, University of Pretoria. All rights reserved. The copyright in this work vests in the University of Pretoria. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the prior written permission of the University of Pretoria

Please cite as follows:

Moseki, MF 2011, Migrating to South Africa : experiences of 'skilled' and 'unskilled' Lesotho workers, MSocSci dissertation, University of Pretoria, Pretoria, viewed yymmdd < http://upetd.up.ac.za/thesis/available/etd-11052012-115521 / >

F12/4/561/gm

Files
  Filename       Size       Approximate Download Time (Hours:Minutes:Seconds) 
 
 28.8 Modem   56K Modem   ISDN (64 Kb)   ISDN (128 Kb)   Higher-speed Access 
  dissertation.pdf 3.27 Mb 00:15:07 00:07:46 00:06:48 00:03:24 00:00:17

Browse All Available ETDs by ( Author | Department )

If you have more questions or technical problems, please Contact UPeTD.