Farmers to 'make their voices heard' in protest against violent attacks
Farmers across SA are expected to stage protests in the next few days to draw attention to violent attacks on farming communities.
Agri SA said in a statement on Thursday that the agricultural community is expected to make its voice heard in various ways, including protesting against violence on farms, opposing bail for suspected perpetrators of farm attacks and showing support for police.
Farmers in the Northern Cape, KwaZulu-Natal and Free State are expected to take a stand.
“These efforts are welcomed as they create further awareness of and draw attention to the devastating affect that crime has on the farming communities who produce food for the country and contribute towards the economy,” said Agri SA's Tommie Esterhuyse.
“Agri SA fully supports the actions by its member organisations. These are spontaneous actions by members to once again draw attention to the seriousness of farm attacks and violent crime in their respective communities and to express their condemnation in this regard,” said Esterhuyse.
He said any action would be carried out within the ambit of the law and that the organisation has been working closely with police to address farm attacks.
“Agri SA will continue to engage with the police to introduce appropriate measures to improve rural safety, such as the more effective implementation of the revised rural safety strategy.”
In a joint statement issued earlier this week, Agri SA and police expressed concern regarding ongoing farm attacks.
Among the proposals on the table is one to increase “visibility to curb farm attacks by both the police and farmers through the blue and white light patrols”.
They have also proposed an “aggressive recruitment process of reservists” and shortening the length of training programmes to encourage more farmers and farm workers to be part of the reservist system.
A concerned phone call received by a family friend on July 26 2020 led to the discovery of an empty, blood-stained house. A community-wide search for Danie Brand, 83, his wife Breggie, 73, and their daughter Elzabie, 54, immediately began.
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