Child murdered: Classify farm attacks as priority organised crime – AfriForum
After the tragic murder of a 12-year-old child, AfriForum called for farm attacks to be categorised as organised priority crimes.
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Civil rights group AfriForum has called for farm murders and attacks to be considered organised crime and categorised as priority crime following the killing of a 12-year-old boy over the weekend.
Action Society founder Ian Cameron has described the farm murder in Welbekend on Saturday as terrible and tragic.
“A 12-year-old little boy was shot and killed with a shotgun on a farm east of Pretoria in Welbekend area on Saturday around 1pm,” he said.
“Five armed attackers entered the house while the boy and his mom were home. The mom managed to get the boy into the car to get him to a hospital after the attack. Tragically he died.”
Cameron said the attackers used two vehicles, a white BMW X5 and a black Toyota, and stole cellphones and laptops.
“This is just terrible,” he said.
Cameron said in 2020, 446 farm attacks and 77 farm murders were recorded while 248 farm attacks and 43 farm murders were recorded in 2021 and 156 farm attacks and 39 farm murders in 2022.
“I don’t think farm murders are increasing in violence because most attacks and murders are brutal,” he said.
Cameron said they know of three farm murders in January, two farm murders in February, five farm murders in March, one in April, four farm murders in May, 10 farm murders in June, four farm murders in July and four in August, two in September reported this year.
AfriForum’s spokesperson for community safety Jacques Broodryk said the trivial brutality of these attacks was a clear indication that this was no ordinary crime.
“How does one shoot a child dead for a few cellphones? These are clearly well organised and planned attacks and therefore should be considered an organised crime and categorised as a priority crime,” he said.
Broodryk also described the attack as absolutely tragic.
Victimologist Prof Jaco Barkhuizen said the fact that the criminals shot a child, shows the lack of empathy and sympathy for these offenders.
“It is always a tragedy when a parent has to bury their own child. Unfortunately, farmers are easy targets because they are so isolated and away from the busy city streets. It’s easier for offenders to enter farms and get to the victims. The fact they killed the child shows you South Africa is on the precipice of anarchy,” he said.
Barkhuizen said sadly the offender was so emboldened and organised versus the police lacking resources that an incident like this would further cause mistrust or lack of trust in police.
“This will further increase vigilantism in communities and eventually anarchy in South Africa. We need to rethink our criminal justice system and policing,” he said.
Barkhuizen said if we don’t do something soon, things will get worse.
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