Limpopo police have arrested two suspects in connection with the murders of an elderly couple that took place in their farm home on Wednesday night.
The remains of 74-year-old farmer, Louis Cloete and his 65-year-old wife Ina were found bound together in their burned-down house in Levubu outside Thohoyandou.
The suspects are believed to have robbed the couple, before tying them up and setting the house on fire.
The smoke emanating from the burning home attracted the attention of a community farm-watch member who on arrival saw the two suspects in Cloete’s bakkie.
The suspects then fled the scene leaving firearms behind in the bakkie.
“Preliminary Police investigations revealed that the farmer and wife were allegedly accosted by suspects who ransacked the farmhouse and took several items including firearms and loaded them into the family vehicle,” said Limpopo Police Commissioner Lieutenant General Thembi Hadebe.
Police and communities enacted a massive manhunt for the two suspects, who were apprehended on Thursday. The search for a third suspect is continuing.
Opposition parties said the Cloetes murder has once again highlighted the inadequate policing in rural and far-flung farming communities.
“The brutality characterising farm attacks and murders indicates that robbery is not the sole motive and that this type of crime ought to be declared a priority crime,” said the Freedom Front Plus in a statement.
The party has also urged all rural and outlying communities to join security and farm watch groups as an added security measure.
“South Africa’s vulnerable rural communities need urgent, clear and decisive action that can no longer be delayed,” added DA Provincial Spokesperson on Transport and Community Safety Katlego Suzan Phala.
“The DA will continue to lobby for an increase in rural safety so that farmers and farm workers enjoy protection so that they can shift their focus from their own safety to ensuring food security,” concluded Phala.