MEDIA STATEMENT BY THE
INKATHA FREEDOM PARTY


IFP KZN Shocked by Another Farm Murder

24 October 2013    

 

The IFP in KwaZulu-Natal is shocked by the murder of Mr Willem Weites, aged 78, who was shot and killed on his farm near Vryheid on Monday morning.

 

IFP KZN Shadow Minister for Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Henry Combrinck, said: “Mr Willem Weites was well known amongst the farming communities of Louwsburg and Vryheid, and this violent senseless murder of an elderly man has shocked us all. This murder also follows on the murder last week of another farmer, Mr Dan Knight, in Himeville and again raises the question of safety and security in farming communities.”

 

“In the last year that the SAPS published statistics on farm attacks in 2006/7 794 cases were reported resulting in 86 murders.  Since then independent monitors have had to compile reports and data from the Transvaal Agricultural Union of SA shows that from 2008 to September 2013 there were 634 farm attacks resulting in 306 murders.”

 

“Commercial farmers and farming communities make our country more self-sufficient and a net exporter of various crops.  Furthermore farming is of vital importance to our economy with Statistics SA estimating that 638,000 people are formally employed in the farming sector and that around 8,5 million people are directly or indirectly dependent on agriculture for their employment and income.  It is therefore essential that we ensure that farming communities can continue their activities given that farms play such an important role in the food security of our country.”

 

“The Rural Safety Strategy adopted to replace the commando system has clearly not had any real affect and does not instil confidence in farmers that their safety and security is given any attention. Farms are generally isolated and it is essential that farmers and farming communities are provided with security and that communications be improved between the province, districts and local farmers to restore trust between farmers who are feeling isolated and the provincial government who must ensure that our farming sector and our country’s food security is protected.”

 

“Next week the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Legislature will be sitting in Dundee as part of its ‘Bringing the Parliament to the People’ and I intend bringing a notice of public importance to ensure that the plight of farmers and farming communities is addressed,” Mr Combrinck concluded.

 

 

For further information contact:

Mr Henry Combrinck

IFP KZN Shadow Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development

078 302 0823