ANC accuses AfriForum of not caring about farm workers

The lobby group 'welcomes' the ruling party's statement condemning farm murders, but says it's 'not enough.'

The ANC released a statement on Friday calling for an end to farm attacks and illegal evictions, and accusing AfriForum of having a “worrisome attitude” when it comes to the suffering of farm workers.

“The African National Congress calls for an end to farm attacks.  As a society we must be concerned [about all] instances of criminality in farms,” the statement reads.

“We must recognise that farm attacks are not restricted to attacks on farmers, but also affects all persons living in farm areas, including some of the most vulnerable in our society, farm workers and their families,” it continues.

“The ANC has noted the worrisome attitude of pressure groups like AfriForum who turn a blind [eye to] the sufferings of the farmworkers [sic]. The farm attacks and eviction of farm workers are [a] violation of human rights,” the statement continues.

READ MORE: Cyril defends on-air statement of ‘no killing of farmers’

In the statement, the ANC also “applauds” the outcome of the Coligny Sunflower case that saw Pieter Doorewaard and Philip Schutte convicted for the kidnapping and murder of a teenage boy who had been accused of stealing sunflowers.

Afriforum has responded to the statement in a statement of their own, saying that while they “welcomed the fact that the ANC today condemned farm murders in a media statement,” they feel “statements alone are not enough to crack down on the crisis in practice.”

The lobby group’s deputy CEO Ernst Roets also denies that “AfriForum is blind [to] the situation of farm workers.”

“AfriForum has already repeatedly expressed its dismay about it, while I even dedicated a chapter in my book Kill the Boer to the relationship between farmers and farm workers,” he says.

NOTE: An earlier version of this article mentioned the AfriForum statement but noted that we could not obtain the original ANC statement. We have since located the statement. 

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