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Two farm attacks within 24 hours in South Africa

An elderly white couple was attacked on their farm on 6 July 2019, at 15:30, in Bokfontein, North West Province. They were violently assaulted and only strategic items were taken.

Published: July 8, 2019, 9:12 am

    The black attackers entered the farm with a car and left with the same vehicle after the brutal assault. The woman (75) was admitted to hospital after being seriously assaulted. Her husband (77) sustained lighter injuries.

    The attackers locked the gate upon exiting the farm. Police and ambulance services were on the scene this weekend.

    The couple sold meat from the farm. The attackers had gained entry to their property by pretending to be buyers. SAPS spokesperson, colonel Amanda Funani confirmed the attack. She said the three attackers not only took firearms but also laptops and smartphones belonging to the couple. There is no information available on the perpetrators, she added.

    Funani told FWM that the farm attack will be classified as “robbery”.

    Within 24 hours, a second farm attack took place in Bokfontein. During this second attack a white victim (72) was viciously beaten over the head and stabbed in head, neck and back. One of the attackers also bit the victim.

    News of the attack was tweeted on 7 July 2019.

    Dr Theo de Jager, Chairman of the farmer’s association Saai, said “one of the most polarising issues is the question of whether this atrocity simply is an extension of general lawlessness in rural areas”. Numerically speaking, gang-related violence on the Cape Flats is even worse than the phenomenon of farm murders, it is claimed.

    On social media, people complain that farm murders are being vilified for “claiming special attention for the agricultural community”. But De Jager said “farm attacks and especially farm murders are not the same as the other run-away statistics”.

    He said there are three aspects in particular that distinguish farm murders from the rest, thereby rendering foreign intervention and special preventive measures essential.

    “Firstly, nobody is publicly asking for township or gang murders to be committed. There is no popular incitement to urban murders. This crime is not the theme of political speeches.” He added: “There is no deliberate creating a political climate that encourages it, as there is in the case of farm murders.

    “Secondly, robberies and urban murders are not committed with the same level of brutal torture. Children are not forced to watch while their mother is being raped; her eyes are not gouged out, and Grandma is not mutilated by a steel drill through her knees. On 4 June this year, AfriForum pointed out with absolutely shocking figures that in almost half of the incidents of this inhuman violence nothing was even stolen. This is murder for the joy of it.

    “Thirdly, following township murders there is no thunderous applause, especially on social media. Hundreds of radical Twitter accounts, with or without pseudonyms, welcome every report of yet another gruesome torture or murder scene and call for more of it, without any consequences. Law enforcers apparently lack the intention, ability or will to do anything about it.”

    The ANC government refuses to admit the growing problem, and without such admission, no solution will be possible. And President Ramaphosa’s denial of farm attacks at the UN in New York last year, has been contributing to the scourge.

    “I often wish political commentators and the security ministers, or the President himself, would only once visit such a farm murder scene. They should smell it and see it: the bestial brutality of the torture, and the blood on the ceiling and the walls,” said De Jager. “Only then they will be qualified to talk about the similarities and differences between farm murders and other crime.”

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