It is clear that a slow war is being fought against South Africa’s white farmers and this slow racial war is increasingly also being taken to towns and cities. The murder of a white farm manager, Brendin Horner (21), serves as proof that the South African government’s rural safety plan is failing.
Horner was tortured and murdered on the farm De Rots near Paul Roux on the evening of Thursday 1 October 2020, in the Free State. Bheki Cele, the South African Minister of the Police, recently said that “farmers must not complain if they get hurt”, suggesting that the victims of farm attacks were the ones who were to blame if they become the targets of violent crime.
Horner’s lifeless body was found tied to a steel pole about 100 metres from the farm gate on the farm De Rots early on Friday morning 2 October. He was in a standing position with a rope tied around his neck.
He had been stabbed several times and it was clear that he had been in a violent struggle to defend himself. Sources told FWM that his knuckles were bloodied from trying to fight back.
Herkie Viljoen of Free State Agriculture told Netwerk24 that Brendin went to visit another farm in the area on Thursday evening where his father Robbie lives, but left before 1900. He never arrived home.
His girlfriend Lenize Taljaard waited for him on De Rots and when Brendin did not come home, the Taljaard and Horner families started a search for Brendin. In the morning they called in the help of the police.
Brendin’s cap with a knife on top of it was found near the farm gate and then his body which was bound to a pole. His vehicle was found abandoned in the area a distance from there and there were blood stains on the seats.
Brendin worked for Gilly Scheepers, a well known farmer and owner of Bloukruin Farm. A shocked Scheepers told Netwerk24 that attackers came to kill the youngest of his employees for an unknown reason because he did not have enemies.
Meanwhile, the ANC clearly plans to implement collective farming, or a kolkhoz system similar to the disastrous project from the former Soviet Union. Ernst Roets of Afriforum has pointed out that the 900 state farms that the ANC says it will give to new black owners will remain in State hands. New occupants will just rent from the State denying them private ownership.
The fact that the ANC is now looking for new black occupants for their state farms also indicates that whatever was done on the land previously, has failed.
Another farm was attacked the very next day. On Friday 2 October 2020 a vehicle with 5 black occupants arrived on the farm of Paul Da Cruz in the Losberg area in Fochville, just after Paul and a worker left.
The occupants of the vehicle asked to speak to Paul’s wife Karen. The mistake that she made was to ask them what they wanted when an owner should be enforcing access control instead.
The strangers took out a firearm and detained Karen. The initial 5 attackers were joined by 4 others. Paul was then overpowered when he arrived home.
Paul da Cruz later told Netwerk24 that the attackers took 2 laptops and a number of firearms that were in the safe after threatening that they would hurt them if they did not hand over the firearms.
Da Cruz also said it was clear that the attackers knew exactly what was happening on the farm yard and knew the layout. Which means the attackers had either surveilled the place beforehand or had informants on the property.
Fortunately in this instance the family was not injured but they were obviously traumatized.
Farm attacks and murders are out of control and cannot be considered ordinary crimes, particularly when the cruelty associated with these incidences is taken into account, South African opposition party, the Freedom Front Plus said in a statement.