Rise in farm attacks in South-Africa sends jitters among farmers and rural communities

The statistics for farm attacks and farm murders in South Africa from 1 January to 30 November show that there were 412 farm attacks for this period, this is on average 1.1 attacks per day.

There were 59 farm murders, which means that a farmer is murdered every 6.2 days.

Gauteng tops the stats charts with 104 attacks with KZN registering 29 attacks. The latest one being in the Geluckstadt area near Vryheid where the De Waal father and son were attacked and robbed this past week.

In Dundee, Corrie Jansen van Rensburg was shot in the leg and her nephew shot at – the firearm miraculously jammed – and his father, Johann, brother and workers were also shot when a group of men attacked St George’s farm three weeks ago.

Police later said four men were arrested near Estcourt in connection with this attack and other crimes.

Five separate farm attack-related incidents were reported between last Tuesday and Thursday morning.

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Ian Cameron, the head of community safety for AfriForum, confirmed that the first attack took place in Honingnestkranspad – a small rural village in the heart of Gauteng – and the most recent occurred in Bela Bela, Limpopo.

This glut of criminal activity follows another attack on a Burgersdorp farmer from earlier in the week. Jan Terburg had boiling water poured over his head by his attackers. The 81-year-old is still receiving treatment at a Bloemfontein medical facility.

Last week, a farmhouse in the Western Cape was a target for attackers, who also spray-painted political slogans on the front door of the Porterville property.

A married couple were beaten, held captive and doused with petrol before Tobie van Schalwyk was able to activate his car alarm with his keys, prompting the three masked assailants to flee.

Farmers have been urged to beef up their security especially during the festive period and alerts have been sent out on rural safety groups.