South African farm attacks: The highest death toll since 2008
Farm attacks and farm murders have increased for a sixth consecutive year in 2016. This the highest death toll since 2008 when 79 people were murdered in such attacks.
Published: December 9, 2016, 12:32 pm
The number of attacks on white farmers, often military-style raids, for the year now totals 16 more than last year.
An Afrikaner Civil rights group AfriForum together with the Transvaal Agricultural Union of South Africa (TAU-SA) on Wednesday announced the official figures during a media conference in Pretoria.
The 2016 figure of 64 murders has only been calculated up to 30 November 2016. According to Gen. Chris van Zyl, Assistant General Manager of TAU SA, December 2016 is already showing a further increase with an estimated ratio of nearly one murder per day for the month, which makes the total farm-murder figure for 2016 the highest for the past seven years.
“A further disturbing trend is the evident increasing use of technology by farm attackers. We have CCTV proof of a device used by farm attackers that represses radio and cell phone communication as well as alarms. This equipment falls in the same league as military equipment that requires an end-user certificate,” says Van Zyl.
Van Zyl explained: “An increase in farm attacks, and a chance to get away with it, are greater and gangs are more organized.” He added: “Crime Intelligence should play a more prominent role.” Van Zyl said farm security patrols have increased as a result of poor security.
Ten months ago, the acting National Police Commissioner Lt-Gen. Khomotso Phahlane, contradicted earlier statements by the ruling ANC and Police Minister that these crimes will be dealt with as ordinary crimes and not as a priority.
A campaign for upgrading these crimes to priority status has been ongoing for a number of years now. Late last year a delegation went to the United Nations asking for international pressure on the SA government to prioritise these crimes.
Lorraine Claasen, a Crime Analyst at AfriForum’s Research Institute (ANI), noted during the conference that she was able to identify certain patterns in her analysis of various farm attacks and murders.
As many as 13 attackers are deployed per incident, research shows. Also, farm attacks are undoubtedly planned in detail, says Claasen. The highest death toll in a single attack in the past year was six people. Victims are often tortured for hours before they are killed, in many instances in front of their spouses or children. Women are invariably raped.
The attackers specifically target the farmer, or the breadwinner during an attack, Claasen noted. It is frequently the first person to be attacked or murdered and his or her dependants are often not killed. The average age of the murder victims was 56 years, the report shows.
Claasen also mentioned that ANI is currently busy updating its data with the names of farm workers who were also the victims of farm murders. AfriForum is furthermore planning various campaigns and projects for 2017 to crack down on farm murders and farm attacks.
Ernst Roets, AfriForum’s Deputy CEO, said during the media conference that he is especially concerned about the potential connection that exists according to him between outrageous political utterances and farm murders.
“Currently a climate prevails in the country where it became popular to make racist and hate speech remarks against white people. Even though we are extremely careful making assumptions when it comes to farm murders and attacks, we view this possible trend in a very serious light.”
Roets had told sapromo.com earlier: “The real test ultimately lies in the figures. We believe that a sustainable strategy against farm murders is impossible without prioritisation by the police and the availability of the necessary resources.”
The damning report comes in the wake of a lengthy exposé by FWM this week, on the ongoing violence against whites on farms in South Africa.
With food prices becoming increasingly onerous for many if not most South Africans, the latest report on farm murders makes for disturbing reading.
South African Rural Development and Land Reform Minister Gugile Nkwinti has candidly acknowledged that the billions spent in the past two decades have reduced food security because 90 percent of the farms re-distributed to black farmers are no longer productive.
According to a 2015 World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) study, 95 percent of the country’s formal-sector food is produced by just 3 percent of the country’s white farmers and the government’s antipathy to white farmers and its proposed policies are driving an increasing number of them to leave the country.
Thousands of farms are currently up for sale. Vast swathes of once-productive farm land now lie fallow as a result of the ANC’s failed land-reform policies as well as the ongoing violence.
While the ANC constantly berates the white farming community for “racism” without providing any proof, its own representatives are hardly the ideal role models in this regard.
Commentators who speak out against the ANC’s racism against whites, often receive death threats.
The Transvaal Agricultural Union has tracked farm murders since 1990 and, during this time, 1848 people have been murdered in farm attacks.
According to TAU statistics this number included 1187 farmers, 490 members of their families, 147 farm employees and 24 visitors to these farms who found themselves in the wrong place at the wrong time.
The black Marxist organisation, the South African National Civic Organization (SANCO) pretends however that farm murders are not about race.
The arrest of a mentally unstable white relative of a white farmer killed at his smallholding near Thabazimbi on Friday illustrates that not all farm attacks involve race, Sanco said on Sunday.
“The fact that the arrested suspect is a relative [of] the murdered 54-year-old… highlights that some callous farm murders are not politically and or racially motivated but are crimes of passion involving family disputes,” Sanco spokesperson Jabu Mahlangu said in a statement.
But this murder was not included in the report released by the TAU-SA and Afriforum as a farm murder.
All rights reserved. You have permission to quote freely from the articles provided that the source (www.freewestmedia.com) is given. Photos may not be used without our consent.
Keep your language polite. Readers from many different countries visit and contribute to Free West Media and we must therefore obey the rules in, for example, Germany. Illegal content will be deleted.
If you have been approved to post comments without preview from FWM, you are responsible for violations of any law. This means that FWM may be forced to cooperate with authorities in a possible crime investigation.
If your comments are subject to preview by FWM, please be patient. We continually review comments but depending on the time of day it can take up to several hours before your comment is reviewed.
We reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive, contain slander or foul language, or are irrelevant to the discussion.
JohannesburgMuch of the Johannesburg city center was a ghost town this week after copper cables were ripped out underground. It appears that robbers had stolen "several kilometres of underground copper cables" last weekend.
Cape TownSouth African President Jacob Zuma has survived an eighth attempt by the opposition to unseat him. The ruling African National Congress (ANC) says the only thing that matters is that the motion for regime change was defeated.
Black women are heavier than their white counterparts new research suggests, because "they experience racism more often". However, none of the reviews of the association of discrimination to health, document the quantitative nature of this relationship.
Cape TownThe Fuck White People "art" displayed in the South African National Gallery does not contravene South Africa's hate speech laws, a black magistrate ruled this week.
KinshasaA new Ebola outbreak has been declared in the Democratic Republic of Congo after the deaths of three people have been linked to the virus. At least one of the deceased has tested positive for the virus, according to the DRC's health ministry. But will a vaccine trump witchcraft?
PretoriaAfricans with albinism are persecuted across the continent. The African Union and SADC have been urged to do more on their behalf, but a campaign launched last year to try and put an end to the crisis, have been met with total indifference.
ColignyThe South African court's decision to grant bail to the two white men of Coligny who are on trial for the murder of a black youth after what seems to have been trumped up charges, was expected, but the outbreak of renewed racial violence came as a result of deliberate racial incitement against Afrikaners by the ruling party.
PretoriaWhite judge Mabel Jansen, who was facing a disciplinary process over "racist" comments she made about the black rape scourge in South Africa, has resigned with immediate effect, the Ministry of Justice and Correctional Services announced on Thursday.
ColignyA black mob stormed one of the oldest white towns in the north of South Africa, Coligny in the North West Province. The area around the town was changed into a conflict zone as violent riots by mobs raged this week after a false rumour was spread.
PretoriaA South African Muslim activist, Yusuf Abramjee, has succeeded in getting a government commission to investigate a private, Christians-only students residence in Pretoria.