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Tag: Farm murders

EFF heading to the SAHRC

The Economic Freedom Fighters in the Western Cape said it would be approaching the police and the South African Human Rights Commission on Tuesday.  This follows protests organised by Agriculture MEC Ivan Meyer, where there were allegedly an apartheid flag on display.  The EFF said that displaying the flag undermines the law and the injustices suffered in the past. Julius Malema’s infamous party demands that those responsible for waving the flag should be held accountable.

The party is also calling for the arrest of Ivan Meyer.  Meyer organised the protest and addressed the crowd.  Wandile Kasibe of the EFF said they would lay a formal complaint with police on Tuesday and also turn to the Human Rights Commission for justice.  “The court of this country has now outlawed the usage of such an extremely racist symbol and anyone found to be using such a symbol has committed a criminal offence.”

Meanwhile Meyer said he has not seen any apartheid era flags being flown during protests,  and added that he will not be intimidated by the EFF.  Valerie Bylefeld, one of the protest organisers, has condemned display of the flags, saying it’s not what they stand for.  “The very same person who should be arrested here is Mr Malema for inciting these murders on the farmers of South Africa.”

Farm Attacks – SA’s Food Security at Risk

Farm attacks, invasions and murders have sparked heated debate across the nation.  Cabinet has now concluded that the killings and maiming of farmers and farm workers in the country are a serious threat to the country’s food security.  The fate of South African farmers have been uncertain as many claimed that the government did not acknowledge or act against the attacks.

According to Cabinet, the endless attacks poses a threat to the greater good and health of country.  Government is fast-tracking the implementation of the revised rural safety strategy to enable police to respond appropriately to the security needs of rural communities and support socio-economic development.  “Cabinet fully supports the work of our South African police in arresting those committing heinous crime in our country which includes the killing and maiming of farmers and farmworkers throughout the country,” said Jackson Mthembu, Minister in the Presidency.

“The farming community is an integral part of our economy, and crime on farms poses a threat not only to the personal safety of farmers and farmworkers but also to the country’s food security.” Minister in the Presidency Jackson Mthembu was briefing reporters about the outcome of the Cabinet meeting on Thursday.  Cabinet called on South Africans to assist police in the fight against crime by being part of community police forums, saying people should work together to root out crime in their communities.

National News – Cele Calls for More Arrests

Bheki Cele, minister of police, on Wednesday said he was hoping for more arrests following the protests outside the Senekal Courthouse earlier this week.  On Tuesday, farmers poured into the Free State town of Senekal where the two accused in the Brendin Horner murder appeared in court.   A 52-year-old farmer was arrested for his alleged involvement in torching a police vehicle.

The protesters demanded justice and eventually stormed into the courthouse.  The demanded the suspects to be handed over to them.  The Minister’s spokesperson, Lirandzu Thema, said in a statement: “Police Minister Bheki Cele has welcomed the arrest of the first suspect involved in the violent demonstrations by a group of farmers outside Senekal Magistrates Court.  Minister Cele is encouraged that a 52-year-old farmer has been arrested for his role in the alleged torching of the police vehicle.”

“Cele is calling for more arrests as it is clear the criminality that took place was a collective act that threatened the rule of law.”  The minister’s response to Tuesday’s events has sparked outrage in the community with several allegations of double standards being made.  The Senekal demonstrations was compared to the EFF Clicks demonstrations and many said that the same laws did not apply there.

The brutal murder of Brendin Horner has been met with outrage.   Tuesday’s protests saw several people carrying placards with the words “Enough is Enough”, “Remember their Names” and “Bheki Cele Must Fall”.  Meanwhile a video has been doing the rounds on social media claiming that the man’s involvement is fake news.

The two suspects will appear in court again on 16 October 2020.

Breaking News – Farmers Unite for Brendin

Brendin Horner celebrated his 1-year work anniversary on the day of his murder.  Today, thousands of people are meeting outside the Senekal Magistrate’s Court to greet the suspects in the murder.  Horner’s employer, Gillie Scheepers, said: “In my eyes, Brendin was a top class guy, he was amazing. He would have achieved so much working here and reached great heights. He was one of the gears that kept the clock ticking.”

href=”https://www.sapeople.com/2020/10/06/watch-crowds-outside-court-where-brendinhorner-murder-suspects-to-appear/”>Tributes

have been pouring in for the young Free State farmer.   The brutal murder of Brendin Horner sparked outrage across the country and people have been arriving in Senekal since early this morning.  A poem by Johannesburg writer Stanley Cierenberg has been shared widely on Social Media.

Provincial Police Spokesperson Brigadier Motantsi Makhele told media: “Two suspects were arrested [last Saturday] in relation to the murder of Brendin Horner. The two suspects were arrested by Senekal detectives at Fateng-tse-ntsho in Paul Roux.  Bloodstained clothes and shoes were found and will be taken in for forensic tests.” Horner’s body was found tied to a pole on Friday morning with serious injuries to his head and face.  A knife was found on the scene and Horner’s Toyota Hilux bakkie was found abandoned later, with bloodstains inside.  “It is suspected that the deceased could have spotted them on that fateful day. According to reports, police received a call from other farmers reporting the attack at DeRots farm. Upon their arrival, police found Horner, who was declared dead on the scene, with injuries to his head and face. The two suspects, aged 32 and 43, will appear in Senekal Magistrate’s Court [on Tuesday] on the charge of murder.”

The brutality of farm murders and attacks have been in the media frequently with one shocking attack after another.  Rape, brutal beatings, and murder have become the norm for these attacks while the country begs the government to step in.

National News – “We will Rape You”

Nine attackers threatened to rape a Gauteng farmer’s children if he refused to cooperate and give them what they wanted.  The farmer has 4 children, aged between 6 and 18.  Paul da Cruz and his wife and four children were attacked on their Westonaria farm in Gauteng on Friday morning.  Da Cruz has stated that the attackers directly threatened his children with rape and added that he wanted his family to get into counselling as soon as possible to deal with the trauma of the attack.  Several firearms and laptops were stolen during the attack. Warrant Officer Peter Masooa, the police spokesperson, confirmed the incident.

Police minister Bheki Cele sparked outrage when he recently termed farm murders as “not a priority crime”.  Cele argued that farm attacks usually refer to incidents classified as aggravated robbery on a farm dwelling.  “The most serious of these crimes are grouped into a category and is referred to as contact crimes and include murder, attempted murder, sexual offences, assault with the intent of causing grievous bodily harm, common assault and aggravated robbery.”

The young Free State Farmer, Brendin Horner, who was killed recently

Meanwhile, the brutality of the attacks have become more and more inhumane and the agricultural sector is under strain to force the government to act against these brutal attacks.  Recently, two suspects were arrested for the brutal murder of Brendin Horner, a young Free State farmer. He was found dead in an open space in Paul Roux around 06:30 on Friday morning, tied to a pole with a rope around his neck and serious injuries to his face and head.  A knife was found near the scene.  The two suspects, aged 32 and 43, will appear in the Senekal Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.

In another case, three men appeared in the Delmas Magistrate’s Court in connection with the murder of Chantel Kershaw, a local 44-year-old farmer.   Chantel was strangled to death before they went inside the house, where they assaulted her mother and locked a female employee in the bathroom.  They stole several belongings and fled the scene in the family’s Chevrolet bakkie.

News: Glen and Vida Rafferty were gunned down in Normandien -KZN

Following a nationwide protest against farm murders on Saturday, there’s been a double homicide on a farm in KwaZulu-Natal.

Glen and Vida Rafferty were gunned down in Normandien on Saturday evening.

Unknown attackers shot the farm owner, 63, and his wife, both 60, as well as their dog, according to police spokesperson Captain Nqobile Gwala.

Police attended the murder scene at around 06:00 on Sunday.

Newcastle Mayor Ntuthuko Mahlaba described the attack as a “gruesome atrocity” and called for the speedy arrest of the killers, News24 reported.

KZN police spokesperson Nqobile Gwala told eNCA suspects ransacked the house before making off with their vehicle, which has since been recovered.

The Democratic Alliance has urged KwaZulu-Natal premier Sihle Zikalala and his government to take rural and farm safety more seriously following the double murder.

“The DA in KwaZulu-Natal is dismayed and horrified by reports of a double murder on a farm murder near Normandien in the Battlefields area of the province”, KwaZulu-Natal DA MPL and spokesperson on agriculture Chris Pappas said in a statement on Sunday.

“Sadly, South Africans have become all too accustomed to the ANC-led government paying lip service when it comes to many of the challenges that our people face. Certainly, rural safety is one of these issues and our communities are increasingly being forced to take their safety into their own hands. This, while ANC leaders fight over Covid-19 tenders and jostle for power in an organisation that has repeatedly admitted that South Africans are not their priority,” Pappas said.

This latest murder came just two days after the province’s agriculture and rural development portfolio committee should have met to make recommendations and resolutions on issues affecting the safety of farmers, farm workers, and rural communities. Unfortunately, the meeting was postponed in what had become a drawn out process that started in January 2020, Pappas said.

On the table for discussion were important recommendations made by the DA and supported by the South African Police Service (SAPS) in the province.

These included:

– declaring farm attacks/murders hate crimes or priority crimes due to their brutal nature;

– establishing an inter-ministerial task team to report to the premier on rural safety;

– calling a rural safety summit where experts could advise government on practical steps to make rural areas safer;

– directly subsidising farm patrols, farm watches, and private security initiatives; and

– making better use of technology such as licence plate recognition, drones, and CCTV in the fight against crime.

Sources: ANA, enca, News24

 

News: Protests against the brutal farm murders in SA

Farmers in Limpopo are protesting against the rapid increase in brutal farms murders around the country.

Last week, Alwyn van Zyl was murdered by armed robbers causing the rural communities to stand together.

The accused suspects are expected to appear in court near Naboomspruit today.

There has been an escalation in farm murders despite the lockdown and police presence.

Farmers, workers and landowners are all victims of these attacks.

 

Crime News: Five suspects arrested for the Brand Family farm murder.

Five suspects in the Hartswater farm murder case have appeared in court for the first time since their arrest earlier this week.

The group is accused of abducted three members of the Brand family, before killing them and abandoning the bodies.

Of the group, two suspects were in their teens and the oldest is aged 42.

A female suspect also appeared in the dock on Thursday. They all rejected an offer of bail and were charged with three counts of murder, kidnapping, and robbery each.

These Schedule 6 offences tend to carry some very stiff penalties, the South African reported.

The alleged farm murder ‘gang’ will remain in police custody until 13 August, as one of the accused has confirmed they will be securing the services of a private attorney to fight their case personally.

According to the South African, AfriForum estimates that July has been a particularly bloody month for farm murders. Nine separate deaths have been reported in the past four weeks, and those mounting frustrations have boiled over in the Northern Cape. For those in Hartswater – and beyond – ‘enough is enough’

 

 

Crime News: Triple Farm Murders in Hartswater.

The bodies of all three family members kidnapped from a smallholding in Hartswater in the Northern Cape have been found. Five people have been arrested.

The murdered bodies of an elderly couple have been found by police after the latest farm attack in the Northern Cape, the family has confirmed.

 Police had searched since Sunday for family Danie Brand, 83, his wife Breggie, 73, and their daughter Elzabie, 54, who lived on a smallholding in Hartswater, Northern Cape.

On Tuesday morning, police discovered the body of Elzabie Brand, in a field in the Taung area, north of Hartswater.

In the afternoon, at around 5pm, the family was informed by police they had found the elderly couple too.

“They’ve just found my parents. They’re gone,” a heartbroken son-in-law Wikus Taljaard told News24.

They were about to sit down to Sunday lunch when they were attacked… they always hit you when you are most vulnerable.” Taljaard told News24.

“These are good people, lovely people – they have been doing so much for the community,” Taljaard said.

Recently, however, their miniature Doberman pinscher had been killed, around two weeks ago.

“My Dad said it was a snake – but it’s quite cold for snakes in winter, isn’t it?” speculated Taljaard.

Of the attack itself, he said:

“It was quite strange: nothing was taken, except for the vehicles. And no money has been withdrawn from any of their accounts. So why did they (the attackers) need to take them away?”

Police confirmed the parents’ bodies were found in a veld in Takaneng Village, said spokesperson Brigadier Vishnu Naidoo.

A fifth suspect, aged 36, has also been arrested. This after a 42-year-old woman, and three men, aged between 18 and 20, were arrested earlier on Tuesday.

Mase Manopole, newly-appointed Northern Cape MEC for agriculture, environmental affairs, land reform and rural development, has condemned the attack, saying she was “working closely with various stakeholders, including the police, to put a stop in the killing of farmers.”

In a strongly worded statement, Dianne Kohler Barnard, chairperson of the DA’s rural safety workstream, asks, “Mr President, will you ignore the Brand family farm attack, too?”

Sources: News24, foodformzansi

 

 

Crime News: Gruesome murder of pregnant woman sparks political action

A pregnant woman had her throat slit on Saturday evening, during a gruesome farm murder that also targeted a male victim and two children.

The death of the mother and her unborn child has repulsed the South African political class, with two parties vowing to bring the issue of rural killings to the president’s doorstep.

The murder took place in Weenen, KNZ, and the following details have been confirmed, according to The South African.

  • Three unknown males gained access via the back kitchen door.
  • The suspects held the father at knifepoint, demanding money. Two young children were also present.
  • In trying to subdue the pregnant woman, she was taken to the bathroom. Her throat was cut by one of the attackers.
  • The father is receiving treatment in hospital, and the attackers fled the property empty-handed.

Chris Pappas, a DA spokesperson for agriculture in KZN, was left incandescent with the brutality. He is pleading with Cyril Ramaphosa to ‘break his silence’ on farm murders and have them reclassified as ‘hate crimes’.

“We are shocked and appalled by the murder that took place in Weenen, KZN – especially due to the loss of an unborn child. There are now two fundamental issues South Africans must deal with: Why does the president stay silent on these incidents? And why are farm murders not classed as hate crimes?”

FF Plus leader, Pieter Groenewald, is also set to lobby our head of state to explain how farm murders are a threat to all races, as well as leaving South Africa’s ability to grow crops and produce food vulnerable. The fifth-biggest party in the country has asked rural citizens to ‘fight fire with fire’ – if it’s legal to do so.

“We will send an official letter to President Ramaphosa to address this incident and the occurrence of farm attacks in general as well as to bring it to the President’s attention that his impression that only white farmers are being murdered is wrong. All farmers in South Africa are being targeted and murdered.”

“This is a serious threat to food security and President Ramaphosa cannot put off taking action any longer. The agricultural community must prepare to fight fire with fire, within the constraints of the law. The senseless massacre of the people of the agricultural community simply cannot continue any longer.” FF Plus statement

 

Source: The South African

Photo Credit: Unsplash

 

 

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