The DA is concerned that the isolated Delmas farming areas in Mpumalanga, may have become an easy target for criminals who want to commit house robberies which eventually lead to farm murders.
On Wednesday this week, the police reported that 80-year-old Hennie van der Walt and his partner 79-year-old Hester Smal were attacked at their Dwarsfontein Farm in Delmas. Unfortunately Van der Walt did not survive the attack and was found in the back bedroom with multiple wounds to the stomach.
This latest farm murder comes after 72-year-old, Jessie Henry Coleman, was brutally murdered in September this year at his Waaikraal farm between Delmas and Bonkhortspruit.
The DA is concerned that there might be a syndicate that is targeting elderly farmers in isolated farms across Delmas.
Recently, 10 people were arrested around Delmas after being found in possession of knives, cable-ties, pangas, ropes, and poison laced sausages allegedly meant for dogs. According to information received, the suspect allegedly confessed that they targeted farms for robbery.
The senseless farm house robberies and killings in Delmas and around Mpumalanga have sent fear, tension and paranoia amongst the farming communities in the province.
The DA would like to send its heartfelt condolences to all the families and victims of farm murders across the province. We would also like to re-iterate our call for rural safety units to be reinstated as a matter of urgency, not just in Mpumalanga, but across the country.
Crime is spiraling out of control in this country and criminals are aware that the response rate to crimes in isolated farms is zero at night because the South African Police Service (SAPS) is severely under-staffed. Without more boots on the ground, we will not win the war against crimes like farm murders.
Our rural communities are under enormous threat, vulnerable to the most heinous form of attacks, leaving many maimed, raped, crippled or blinded. Due to the isolation of rural communities’ attackers have the time to hone their craft, leaving victims in pools of blood.
The DA will continue the fight to ensure that all South Africans are afforded equal protection and safety by government and SAPS as determined in our Constitution.