Farm murders continue unabated in South Africa

Source:Xinhua Published: 2013-10-21 8:48:07

Farm murders continue unabated in South African, with at least one person being killed on a farm every day on the average, according to figures released on Sunday.

In the latest incident, an elderly couple was killed during a brutal attack on their farm over the weekend in the North Eastern Cape, said Eyewitness News, a Cape Town-based news outlet.

The report linked the incident to Satanism and ancestral beliefs.

The murders have a ripple effect on communities and the whole country, said Kobus Visser of AgriSA, an association of farmers.

"Agri SA is disappointed with each murder that takes place. It's unnecessary, the lives being taken could contribute to rural development, the economy and farmworkers," Visser was quoted as saying.

In South Africa which has a much higher crime rate than other countries, farmers run a significantly higher risk to be murdered compared to the general public and the police, according to the Solidarity Research Institute (SRI).

Furthermore, although farm attacks occur globally, farm attacks on South African soil are estimated to be 700 percent higher than in any other country in the world, the institute said in its latest report.

Farmers from different racial groups fall victim to farm attacks, but white farmers stand an even greater risk to become a victim of an attack. In addition, the chances of a farmer being murdered on a farm in South Africa are anything between four to six times higher than the average murder risk rate for the general population, the report claims.

The report criticizes the South African Police Service (SAPS) for neglecting the problem by no longer keeping accurate records of the number of farm attacks.

By this time it is indisputable that rural safety and farm attacks in particular constitute a crisis, the institute says.

The government has rejected repeated calls to declare growing farm attacks "a crime of priority."

Posted in: Africa

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