KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala says the poor functioning of some police stations should be addressed as matter of urgency. He was speaking during a meeting with representatives of farmers and farmworkers in Newcastle north of the province.
Tensions between farmers and their workers have been rising in the area following recent farm attacks.
In the latest attack three weeks ago, a farmer and his wife Glenn and Vida Rafferty were murdered.
Community shocked following murder of Glenn and Vida Rafferty:
Zikalala says police should work in a fair manner.
“There are problems that relate to the operation and the function of our police station. We need police in all our police station to work objectively and in a fair manner and should not take sides and favour others to the expense of others,” he says.
Sihle Zikalala engages the farming community on Newcastle:
In early September, hundreds of vehicles lined up in the streets of Newcastle in a peaceful march against farm murders.
“Each and every one of these crosses represents almost 10 commercial farmers murdered over the years. These are 500 crosses. We are also here today mourning the death of the Rafferty from Normandien. They were brutally murdered last week when they returned home. We want to see action, more visible policing,” said one of the organisers of the march, Darrell Brown.
Farmer Theunis Nel says if the killing of farmers continues, the country will struggle to produce enough food.
“If you look at what happened in Zimbabwe, farmers were chased off in 2001. Now, Zimbabwe is completely poverty-stricken and their currency devaluates. If this continues, we are going to have the same and there’s going to be a massive food shortage and lack of investment and we are not going to be self-sustainable.”
Hundreds line up in protest against farm murders: