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Mpumalanga: Two farm attacks in less than a week proves that rural safety is not a priority

Two farm attacks in less than a week proves that rural safety is not a priority for Mpumalanga's police force and provincial government.

In the latest incident on Sunday, six farm attackers strangled Mr Gustav Rappart (76) to death and tied up his wife, Elma, on their farm outside Delmas. The attackers made off with two cell phones.

It followed close on the heels of a similar attack, which took place on the 11th of March on Mara outside Mbombela/Nelspruit.

During that attack, three women, namely Ansie Nel, her mother of 84, Miemie du Toit, and Sophie Mpila were tied up and tortured. When he arrived home, Mr Hendrik Nel was also overpowered, bound and tortured.

The five alleged farm attackers fled with three firearms and various other items.

Clearly, the ANC government in Mpumalanga does not have the political will to combat this type of crime and make rural safety a priority.

The FF Plus requested the Legislature's Portfolio Committee on Community Safety to summon the MEC for Community Safety, Vusi Shongwe, and the provincial Police Commissioner, Lt.-Gen. Semakaleng Daphney Manamela, to appear before the Committee to report on the matter.

They must provide answers on the implementation of the rural safety plan in Mpumalanga and the critical lack of police resources, like vehicles, which prevents the police force from doing its job properly.

Although it is the police's duty to implement the rural safety plan, the MEC must, as political head, monitor its progress.

The FF Plus is once again calling on rural communities to intensify their personal safety and security measures.

Ways in which to do this is to join the local farm watches and community policing forums, to remain vigilant at all times, and not to trust strangers.

The FF Plus in Mpumalanga expresses its deepest condolences to the family of Mr Rappart and wishes the surviving victims a speedy recovery.

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