Motorcyclists set to rally hope against farm murders

Bikers will participate in the ride to create awareness for the cause.

The Mpumalanga 9/11 Ride is set to take place from June 9 to 11.

Bikers will participate in the ride to create awareness for the cause.

They will start from the police offices in Mbombela, and stop in White River, Hazyview and Lydenburg, and spend the first night in Middelburg, Lowvelder reported.

Picture supplied.

They will depart the next morning from Pienaar Dam, stop in Witbank, and Carolina and then head west to Badplaas for the second night. On the Sunday, they will ride to Barberton, Low’s Creek, Tonga, Komatipoort, Malalane and Matsulu and then head back to Mbombela.

The idea is to do a circle route of Mpumalanga and welcome those who want to join in along the way.

“When a farmer is murdered it is more than just a farm that is left without an owner. Employees are left without an employer, a family loses a mother or a father,” said Past TJ Mare, the organiser of the event.

Mare said that one farmer feeds up to 1 500 people per day, and that 90 per cent of the time, an attacker has no ties to the farm.

“We often hear it was disgruntled employees who attack their bosses, but that only happens every now and then. The truth is that farmers are targeted by criminals looking for an opportunity to plunder, with the least amount of risk to get caught.”

Mare also commented that being a farmer is not a racially exclusive thing, as every person working on a farm is a farmer, and that black and white alike are murdered.

The campaign is not driven by anger though, but rather by hope and gratitude.

“We are stopping at 24 police stations to thank the SAPS for their hard work and dedication. They will each sign a memorandum that we will hand to the provincial commissioner. We are also stopping to meet some farmers along the route.”

The initial party numbered 20, but within a week the group of bikers expanded to 80. Mare remains hopeful that the group will grow larger in the next week.

“A group of motorbikes gathers attention. The bigger the group, the bigger the fuss. That is what we want. We want to create awareness, and show the farmers that South Africa cares about them.”

Mare requests anyone who wishes to be part of the run to contact him on 082-772-6396. Only motorbikes larger than 250cc will be allowed.

Caxton News Service

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