Closer cooperation between the public sector – the police – and the private sector – farmers and farm workers – is the only way in which farm murders can be stopped and security in rural areas can be improved. In this regard, lessons should be taken from the past when the commando system was successful in combating crime in rural areas, according to Dr. Pieter Mulder, FF Plus leader.
Dr. Pieter Mulder participated in a debate in the course series at Aardklop about land reform and farm murders. The minister of police, Nkosinathi Nhleko, also participated in the debate.
“Where approximately 50 in every 100 000 police members in South Africa are murdered, the figure for farmers is more than 100 in every 100 000. This means that it is twice as dangerous to be a farmer in South Africa today as it is to be a member of the police. When there was a spate of murders of police officers, the former police minister immediately arranged a special summit. “Why is the position of farmers in the same vain not being dealt with as a priority?” Dr. Mulder wanted to know.
Dr. Mulder also wanted to know why the national Police Commissioner, Gen. Riah Phiyega, could give statistics on farm murders to the Human Rights Commission while the police have consistently replied to questions in parliament that there aren’t separate figures of farm murders available to be given to members of parliament.
The creation of official security structures at a local level consisting of farmers, farm workers and reservists and the police, is the right direction in which to move to resolve the current problems with farm murders, according to Dr. Mulder.
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