World taking note of murder and violence in South Africa

Dr Pieter Groenewald

Not only the xenophobic murders and violence in South Africa has focused the attention of the world on the country, but the fifteen cruel murders of white people in the last month has also caused shockwaves internationally, while locally it has hardly had any effect, Dr. Pieter Groenewald, the chief spokesperson of the FF Plus on Police said.

In particular, the murder of the elderly Gertrude Tiefenbacher (86) as well as a well-known figure in the international film industry, Mr. Greg Poustie (45) is echoing worldwide. In South Africa the media has hardly taken notice of it.

Poustie, from Ramsgate in KwaZulu-Natal acted in various movies such as Tarzan and the Lost City, Shark Attack and Warhead, as a stuntman and also acted in smaller roles in other films. He was a professional diver who regularly accompanied divers internationally and in his spare time he offered first-aid training courses to young people in his area.

He died after a robbery at his home on Thursday 16 April. His car had been stolen.

While condolences have been streaming in from all over the world, a small report appeared in a local newspaper, the South Coast Herald.

The death of Tiefenbacher from Ixopo, also in KwaZulu-Natal and the cruel manner in which she was possibly also raped and her throat cut afterwards, is being reported on in various languages on the internet. According to some reports, she came to South Africa as a young Austrian girl to render charity services in black communities.

In local media, hardly anything can be found on the death of Tiefenbacher and Poustie and another five of the fifteen white South Africans who had been murdered this month.

Dr. Groenewald says it is a tragic reflection on the state of affairs in South Africa that crime has become so common, that even murder is hardly news at all now.

“We have, as a community, become blunt to murder and violence. In a residential area such as Khayelitsha, on average four people are killed in a weekend. Do we ever hear anything about this?

“According to statistics of the Transvaal Agricultural Union, 19 people have already been murdered on farms and small-holdings this year. The question can be asked why the ANC government does not address the slaughter of its own people and on farms with the same vigour as it does in addressing the xenophobic violence, where even the Defence Force had been deployed,” Dr. Groenewald said.


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