Farm murders – fed up letter
Mr J.G. Zuma
President of the Republic of South Africa
Private Bag X 1000
Hand delivered to: Union Building, Government Avenue, Pretoria
Dear Mr President
REQUEST FOR THE TEMPORARY DEPLOYMENT OF RURAL SAFETY UNITS
I would like to inform you by means of this letter that I am fed up: Fed up with the increasing level of violent crime; fed up with the increasing number of farm attacks and murders; fed up with your and your Government’s unwillingness or simple inability to address these crimes; and fed up with your rhetoric and actions that enable and encourage rather than deter crime.
Did you know, Mr President, that South Africa has approximately 32 000 commercial farmers, who, despite your party’s optimistic NDP, have shown continuous economic decline?
Did you know, Mr President, that your own party’s Commission of Enquiry found that at least 6 122 farm attacks and 1 254 farm murders had taken place between 1991 and 2001?
Did you know, Mr President, that farmers and farmworkers fell victim to at least 30 verified farm attacks and 15 verified farm murders since the beginning of February 2017?
Did you know, Mr President, that the Institute for Security Studies calculated in 2013 the annual rate at which South African farmers were murdered to have been 120/100 000, while TAU SA calculated it in 2014 to have been 132,8/100 000?
Did you know, Mr President, that these farm attacks and murders are often characterised by extreme violence and torture?
Did you know, Mr President, that General Phahlane, the South African Police Service’s Acting National Commissioner, declared farm murders a priority crime in 2016 – after your party deprioritised it in 2007 despite a 25% increase in attacks in the same year?
Did you know, Mr President, that a report by the South African Human Rights Commission that was commissioned in 2014 made recommendations on how several of your Government’s departments could aid the fight against farm attacks and murders?
Did you know, Mr President, that very few, if any, of these recommendations were implemented by your Government’s departments?
Did you know, Mr President, that police in rural areas often find themselves understaffed, underequipped and without support?
Did you know, Mr President, that we cannot win the fight against farm attacks and murders on our own?
Well – now that you know, I would like to put forward my request that:
• You sanction the deployment of temporary rural safety units;
• You instruct your Government’s departments to revisit the SAHRC report and implement the recommendations that it makes;
• You, your party and your Government refrain from inciting the occupation of land and the use of violence against farms and farmers; and
• You also act firmly against others outside of those structures who incite the illegal occupation of land and violence to be used against farms and farmers.
Your actions throughout the years have made it clear that you come first. You are the number one and no expense is spared to protect you. I ask of you, however, that we, ordinary citizens who contributed to the country’s economy, who provide the country with food, and who provide countless jobs come as a close second, worthy of similar protection.
* Contact details are required for verification purposes.