Saturday, April 14, 2018
A new sense of urgency has entered South Africa’s land reform process after the country’s parliament took a resolution to amend the constitution to effect land expropriation without compensation. But even this will fail if the country doesn’t improve support for small and emerging black farmers who should be allocated a prime role in any reform process.
International experience shows that small and middle-range farmers play a critical role in land reform processes. For example, research on Zimbabwe shows increased productivity on small and medium-sized farms after land reform.
In my research, I found that South Africa has failed to take advantage of the “middle farmer” factor. Support from government is grossly insufficient; banking support is almost non-existent.
Black people who venture into commercial farming are bound to fail. Commercial farming is a capital intensive business. The battle to secure support has forced many struggling black farmers to rent out their land to established white farmers.
The situation is made worse by the fact that what limited state support there is has been hijacked by corrupt elements or a small authoritarian rural elite. A selected few politically connected individuals have begun to dominate the space.
If this is left unchanged, South Africa is likely to see more black commercial farmers being forced out of the space. Some may turn to renting out their land, others may sell their properties back to white farmers. This will render the land acquisition process futile.
The experiences of a young black aspirant commercial farmer named Lonwabo Jwili, who has bought a small piece of land near Johannesburg, are a case in point. He highlighted his challenges in a conversation I had with him.
Would you advise young black South Africans to go into farming?
I would advise them to go into farming only if they have passion for it. Farming is not like most jobs. It’s extraordinarily hard and requires lots of patience which runs out if not accompanied by loads of passion.
Farming will break and bankrupt you. It will test your mental strength.
From your experience, what are the three “make or break” interventions for young black farmers?
Access to information, finance and markets.
Access to information: My experience tells me that young black people who try out farming face a dearth of information about critical aspects. For example, you don’t find readily accessible information on planting practices.
I think this is a function of the fact that the country doesn’t have a very good extension service programme – a worldwide practice of professional agents who help farmers improve productivity by providing advice, information and other critical support services.
The Department of Agriculture is meant to run an extension service programme. But in my experience, it’s very poor to non existent. The only time extension officers have been to my farm was when they came to give me advice on my irrigation system. And it turned out to be very bad advice.
In my case I certainly needed good information to make headway because I ventured into unknown territory. Yes, I grew up on a farm. But my homegrown farming knowledge was on livestock. I’m currently producing vegetables and some grains. A well functioning agricultural extension service would have saved me time and money.
Access to finance: Everywhere you look in South Africa there are claims that the country provides financial support for small and emerging farmers. The banks and state owned development finance institutions make this empty claim.
The Land Bank is a perfect example. It is supposed to develop small black farmers like myself. But it’s almost impossible to get funding from the Land Bank.
When I tried to apply for finance to purchase the farm, the Land Bank sent me a two-page list of requirements. I could satisfy everything on the list except for one thing: they required off-take agreements (that’s a pre-assurance from a business that it will buy my produce).
Its almost impossible for someone like myself with no commercial farming experience to get off-take agreements from a market dominated by a few mainstream retailers.
Big retailers – and even smaller ones – won’t offer an off-take agreement to someone starting out.
And so the Land Bank wouldn’t dare take a risk on my endeavour. So I took a different route, approaching a bank for a normal loan and bonding my home against the farm property.
But even here I struggled. I think that finance institutions also need to understand that there is a different kind of farmer emerging. One’s like me. I’m not farming full-time because I can’t yet afford to do so. My off-farm job funds my seed, fertiliser and pays my staff. I need to keep my off-farm job while building the farm into a self sustaining operation. The banks I approached didn’t seem to want to grasp my situation.
Access to markets: This is the most critical factor of farming. For example, even when I produced 17 000 cabbages last season I still struggled. That’s because I was only able to find a market for them when it was too late – they’d been in the ground too long.
I’m also disadvantaged by distance. My vegetable and grain producing farm is 70 km outside Johannesburg so it’s difficult to access the big city markets.
But with the assistance of family and friends, I managed to secure another retailer to pick up my produce. In hindsight, I should have tapped these networks first before going for big markets like the Pretoria and Johannesburg fresh produce markets which offered me unacceptably low prices.
What can be done to support young black commercial farmers?
I think the government should review its programmes to see if they are actually working or not.
They might want to reconsider their focus on rural communities. Yes, rural communities need assistance in terms of development. But the government also needs to acknowledge operations like mine which are located within a 100 km radius of a big city.
I am halfway into becoming a sustainable farmer. I’ve purchased the land and am producing the best products possible. I think operations like mine deserve some state support.
Right now I don’t necessarily need financial support from government. But it could help facilitate other types of support for farmers like me. For example, government could facilitate access to markets and to farm production machinery such as advanced tractors, ploughs and other implements.
The private sector could also come to the party. Banks are critical players. They need to realise that there are young black entrepreneurs who want to farm. They need to create financial products – like loans and insurance – that are going to assist emerging farmers. Currently their products are focused on serving established farmers.
After I had bought the farm using my own funds I approached three banks to secure finance for farm production and machinery. I was rejected on the basis that I had no farming experience.
Banks need to look at things differently. I’m not calling for banks to be reckless in their lending. But I have been taken aback by some of the banking practices I’ve seen.
For example, I can qualify for normal credit, but not for an agricultural specific financial product. I could easily apply for finance to buy a Mercedes Benz worth about R200 000 to pay over five years. I could borrow the same amount as a cash loan. But the answer was “no” when trying to secure funding for a tractor worth R 1 million.
Banks need to be more innovative by designing ways of lending, for example, that move away from monthly instalments and towards seasonal instalments in line with agricultural cycles of planting and harvesting.
Mnqobi Ngubane, PhD candidate, University of the Western Cape
This article was originally published on The Conversation.
Much recent news and public discourse might seem to indicate that South Africa’s non-racial rainbow is fading. Racism, its expression and its consequences, seem to be all around.
First prize goes to former real estate agent Vicki Momberg. She was recently sentenced to a three year jail term (one year suspended) for the vicious racial abuse of black traffic officers and police emergency call centre operators attempting to help her after a smash and grab incident.
Then there is the land reform debate. Its enormous complexity is swept aside by both black populist politicians demanding the return of land “stolen” by whites and the white right claiming that white farmers are under siege and fear for their lives.
In reply to Business Day columnist Peter Bruce’s stating that the extent of farm murders has been grossly exaggerated, a white correspondent to the newspaper cited approvingly the man generally accepted as the architect of the brutal policy of apartheid, Hendrik Verwoerd:
Verwoerd felt that the only way whites in SA would survive would be if some system could be devised to that they could maintain control of their destiny within a Western framework. Otherwise, they would simply be overwhelmed… Now we are experiencing what Verwoerd predicted. Whites are being bullied incessantly and deprived of their assets by black politicians.
How on earth should South Africans deal with all this? There is, frankly, no easy answer to this question. But here are a few considerations.
Journalist Joshua Carstens, writing on News24, suggested that Momberg’s crude racism was “simply the tip of an iceberg”. He had no quarrel with her sentence, but wondered whether it would work. He argued that while it might be possible to regulate people’s behaviour,
you can’t legalise people’s minds and hearts.
Unexpressed racism may be even more dangerous if it is left lurking below the surface. He went on to encourage like-minded whites to take a stronger stand against racism in their private lives.
Nothing wrong with that at all. Indeed, its sentiment is highly commendable. But, would it really be better if racists displayed their honesty by roundly abusing black people? Or is it better if they curb their lips for fear of joining Momberg in jail?
Legislation changing minds
It’s wrong, I think, to suggest that legislation cannot change minds. True, it might often take the long haul. But laws do more than reflect social norms: they mould them.
The law is meant to entrench what society thinks is right. If it prescribes that racism, sexism or homophobia are wrong, there is probably a better chance that people will come to accept it in genuine democracies (especially over the generations). But the law can also be used to effect structural change.
Take for instance black economic empowerment and equity employment legislation. Their pros and cons are much debated, yet it seems difficult to deny that without them, South Africa would have a much stronger white minority profile today than it would without them.
For all their faults, such laws and associated state pressures for “demographic representivity” would seem to have been a necessary element in decolonising society. This is not to deny that they come with numerous difficulties.
This is shown by the case of Mark Lamberti, chief executive officer of Imperial Holdings. He called Adila Chowan, a Muslim Indian woman who had become group financial manager at the company’s subsidiary, a “female employment equity” candidate in the presence of other senior managers. Lamberti was convicted in the High Court of impairing her dignity and ordered to pay her costs and yet to be decided damages.
Lamberti has responded by insisting that he is not a racist. Whether or not his actions were racist were not dealt with by the court; the judgment was that he had offended the complainant’s dignity. Whether or not one’s view is that he was racist and/or sexist, it is beyond doubt that his behaviour was thoroughly crass.
Nonetheless, it points to a dilemma.
Equity employment is designed to promote fairness in the workplace and black upward mobility in the face of white structural privilege. But the irony is, as Chowan has so bravely highlighted, black and female candidates resent being labelled as equity employment candidates.
They point out, correctly, that it is demeaning to any black or woman appointee to say that they got the job because they were black or female. They want to be recognised as having been appointed on merit. Yet the problem is that without such goads as equity employment legislation, progress towards racial equality in the workplace would almost certainly be a lot slower.
South Africa’s main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, is wrestling with this very issue . The party has long claimed that it has become increasingly racially diverse as the governing ANC has in practice and much rhetoric withdrawn from non-racialism. Yet although the DA now has a black leader in Mmusi Maimane, there has been rising discontent among its black membership that the party is still dominated by a conservative old guard of whites.
This has led to calls for the introduction of race-based quotas, which many in the party have resisted. They complain that such group determined racial categorisation would run against the DA’s liberalism, which is based on the advancement of individual rights.
Reportedly, the party’s senior leadership arrived at a compromise proposal for putting to the DA’s federal congress which committed it to taking,
active steps to promote and advance diversity… without recourse to rigid formulae or quotas.
What should be drawn from all this? Probably many things. But one certainty is that more humility is necessary from all those engaged in the debate. People must accept that there are no easy answers. The project of rendering South Africa more equal is one of enormous complexity, fraught with as many philosophical problems as structural and political ones.
Alas, there will be more Mombergs, more Lambertis and more people seeking to revive Verwoerd and render his memory respectable. There will be more black populism in response.
Yes, it’s almost certainly going to be a rough ride, but those South Africans who don’t believe or don’t want to believe that a better South Africa is possible should be honest about it – and bugger off elsewhere.
Roger Southall, Professor of Sociology, University of the Witwatersrand
This article was originally published on The Conversation.
Tuesday, April 10, 2018
Former South African president Jacob Zuma’s court appearance carries huge significance for the country. That’s because his criminal trial is not merely about public outrage at state capture and corruption in high political offices. Nor is it just about Zuma facing the consequences of his abuse of office. Or the criminal justice implications of a former president being charged with a series of crimes.
Its broader significance is that Zuma’s court appearance affects many of the most important philosophical foundations of South Africa’s constitutional democracy. The charges against him are immensely important for the foundations of the state. They also matter for democracy and for the constitutional social contract.
This is because the legitimacy of any elected public representative is based on the mandate they receive at a general election. That mandate is the product of a contract between voters and public representatives. Voters cede part of their most fundamental democratic rights of public participation to the representatives. In exchange, and as a cornerstone of representative democracy, elected representatives must account for their actions to Parliament and to the voters.
If a public representative deviates from that mandate – or abuses it for other purposes or his own interest, or worse even for criminal purposes – then the foundation of representative democracy is violated. If abuses become widespread, or if a person in a key public position violates this contractual relationship, the foundation of representative democracy is under threat.
Public opinion in South Africa accuses Zuma of such a violation. The public also expects him to take political responsibility for it. In this context, his prosecution will amount to a public process to rectify and remedy his undemocratic and unconstitutional behaviour.
Zuma’s mere appearance in court, and the accompanying public humiliation, should act as a reprimand for his abuse of the public’s trust in him as elected president. In essence, it could be seen as a process to restore the constitutional relationship between the public and elected representatives.
State capture and state institutions
Although his charges don’t address it directly, state capture is a subtext in his court appearance. State capture – the alleged undue influence of Zuma’s friends, the Gupta family, in the running of the state for private gain – has caused serious institutional degradation in the public sector. The works of scholars Daron Acemoglu and James A. Robinson emphasise the importance of strong and capable state institutions.
Once institutions are threatened or undermined, states start to malfunction and constitutional crises develop. Institutions are associated with a number of constitutional principles. These include the separation of powers, judicial independence, a state’s responsibility to provide security and services as well as to collect taxes. Once state institutions are weakened, it becomes impossible to implement and protect constitutional rights.
Zuma’s infiltration of state institutions, such as the criminal justice system, the revenue service, the intelligence institutions and enterprises such as the power utility Eskom, almost broke the institutional spine of the state. This would have happened had it not been for institutions such as the Public Protector and the National Treasury, the Reserve Bank and the judiciary.
Part of Zuma’s legacy also includes the state’s fiscal capacity being seriously compromised as well as state institutions such as the Hawks or National Prosecuting Authority.
It’s necessary for him to account for all, in public.
The law and moral values
The criminal offences that Zuma faces – including corruption, fraud, money laundering or racketeering – are not only crimes. They’re also violations of a society’s moral value system.
A legal system is intended to protect a society’s value system. It’s therefore an essential aspect of any constitutional democracry.
In this light, Zuma’s trial is not only about whether he did, or didn’t, commit certain crimes. It will also serve to reaffirm the moral values that direct the lives of public representatives. Corruption, for example, harms the relationship between the voter and public representative and the electoral mandate that regulates that relationship. It challenges the very essence of representative democracy.
A former president on trial will be a strong reminder that political power is not supreme, that it cannot guarantee uncensored immunity and privilege. A trial will send the message that unbridled power comes with high risks and huge costs.
Luckily, the South African legal system does not allow for presidential immunity. It can thus avoid the spectre of autocratic executives who escape punishment for corruption.
A message for the private sector
Zuma’s trial also sends a message to the private sector – that it’s conduct is judged by the same moral values as those used for public representatives. State capture collusion by private sector entities equally undermines the constitutional dispensation.
Hopefully, Zuma’s case will motivate business executives to reconsider how they relate to government, what form of lobbying is acceptable, how they participate in procurement processes, and how they deal with conflicts of interest.
It’s very important that the Zuma case is approached with utmost professionalism by the prosecuting authority. All the principles of the rule of law should be on display. No special treatment should be considered and no overt political agendas should be tolerated from any side – either to please or to humiliate.
Dirk Kotze, Professor in Political Science, University of South Africa
This article was originally published on The Conversation.
The Democratic Alliance (DA), South Africa’s main political opposition party, has held its national congress and declared its readiness for the 2019 elections. It considers these its most important to date.
Apart from electing a not-so-new leadership, the congress was marked by robust debate about setting a political agenda for the future. It reflected on key issues such as land reform and promoting diversity in its ranks.
It also addressed the need to recreate the party’s image in preparation for the 2019 general elections. The DA must stand strong and not be divided on the basis of race, said Mmusi Maimane, who was re-elected unopposed as federal leader.
Born from a merger between the former Democratic Party’s amalgamation with the New National Party and the Federal Alliance, the DA sought to become a “party for the people” on the platform of non-racialism and a formidable opposition to the governing African National Congress (ANC). The DA espouses liberal politics and has claimed a long history of resistance to apartheid, most notably through its hero Helen Suzman who was a thorn in the flesh of successive apartheid regimes. Yet, the party struggles to lose the label of a “white party” that would bring back apartheid.
The DA is potentially in a good position to become a challenger for power. The dominant ANC suffered a loss of legitimacy under the leadership of Jacob Zuma, most evident in its steady loss of electoral support. It is fighting to regain ground after it emerged quite bruised from the 2016 local government elections. It lost the key metropolitan municipalities of Tshwane, Johannesburg and Nelson Mandela Bay where it dominated since 1994.
The governing party is trying to repair its image by riding on the positive sentiment that has accompanied President Cyril Ramaphosa’s leadership – of both the ANC and the country.
But history might be against the ANC. It has been shown that dominant parties tend to break down due to a crisis of legitimacy. Weak political leadership, corruption, factional battles and governance, all of which have recently plagued the ANC, have been known to favour challenger parties.
Challenging for power
It would seem that the 2019 general elections may be the opportunity for the DA to emerge as a credible challenger for power. It is the largest opposition party with a track record in governance. But, one will also need to consider the potential impact of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) which – like the DA – will campaign in ANC strongholds for votes.
The DA still has a lot of work to do, most notably around race and representation. More specifically, it needs to break down perceptions that it is a white party. These perceptions were evident in its failure to win outright majorities in the 2016 local government elections; it had to rely on coalitions to oust the ANC from power in key municipalities.
In building the DA as a sound alternative to the ANC, Maimane has claimed that the DA rather than the ANC now embodies the non-racial vision of Nelson Mandela.
Yet, a racialised dynamic continues to find expression within the internal dynamics of the DA, as shown by talk of a “black caucus” in its ranks. It indicates that racial prisms shape internal party dynamics.
Significantly the party’s former parliamentary leader, Lindiwe Mazibuko, has urged it to reflect on
She was responding to the DA’s anti-racism pledge that all new members would be required to sign.
The debate on diversity at the congress shaped the contest between mayors Solly Msimanga and Athol Trollip for the position of party federal chairperson. In celebrating his victory, Trollip proclaimed that he was “humbled that the DA election was not all about race”.
Given the reports about the narrow margin of Trollip’s victory, it’s possible his win could have been the result of political pragmatism. Potentially, some members may have voted for him so that the party could demonstrate unity ahead of the motion of no confidence against him brought by the EFF in his capacity as Nelson Mandela Bay’s mayor.
The battle of ideas
Maimane avers that the DA remains committed to creating a non-racial and equal South Africa in which each person will have equal opportunity, regardless of background. He draws on the vision of African liberalism.
He has highlighted the need to carve out a new agenda for African liberalism:
As African liberals, we know that poverty is the greatest threat to individual freedom, because civil liberties mean nothing if there is no food on the table. A hungry person cannot claim freedom. This is why we believe in social welfare and a growing economy that lifts people out of poverty.
The ANC similarly seeks to secure “political hegemony in society” through what it posits as the “battle of ideas”.
Through the battle of ideas, the DA may now move to further lay claim to Mandela’s and the ANC’s historic mission of creating a non-racial, non-sexist and democratic post-apartheid society. The DA has reclaimed the vision of Nelson Mandela and placed African liberalism at the core of its ideological battle of ideas. The extent that they will win the vote in ANC strongholds remains to be seen given a lack of political trust towards the DA in those areas.
Towards a party for all
The challenge for the DA seems to be ironing out issues of representation, voice, and feelings of black marginalisation within its own party structures before embarking on the 2019 election campaign.
This would require the party to decisively solve its internal divisions and put an end to such labels as “black caucus”, which effectively undermine its message of non-racialism and stated quest to be a party for all South Africans.
Joleen Steyn Kotze, Senior Research Specialist in Democracy, Governance and Service Delivery at the Human Science Research Council and a Research Fellow Centre for African Studies, University of the Free State
This article was originally published on The Conversation.
Sunday, April 1, 2018
As somebody who is actually making the time to follow the news in South Africa, unlike Ms Adrian Fleur it seems, I can not let this Facebook post by Ms Fleur just slide .
I would not have been concerned by her post, because there are many people who deny or plainly lie about the true situation in South Africa, but her post is going viral . Her post has currently almost 3400 shares around the world and every time I look there are more shares.
I take issue with her post and will copy and paste it later . I personally try to share all verified accounts shared on reputable news sites about farm murders on my FB page, so I know exactly how bad the situation of our farmers are .
Not only farmers of course because South Africa is one of the unsafest countries in the world and a category that is just as vulnerable is elderly white people who are regularly attacked, killed , maimed and sometimes raped in their own homes .
I dont exclude the fact that crime in general in South Africa is out of control . We have about 52 murders in South Africa each and every day and attacks on foreign tourists are escalating rapidly. Our parks, beaches and mountains have become dangerous because of lurking criminals out to rob and savagely assault people just out to enjoy nature .
In short South Africa has become dangerous and our farmers are very much in danger . I have spoken to many farmers and what is clear is that they have to transform their farm houses in mini fortresses in an effort to survive . But many dont survive .
At last count there were about 110 farm attacks in South Africa so far this year and 17 murders of white South Africa farmers, only for 2018.
These are verified figures released by civil rights body Afriforum . The numbers of attacks are mind numbing and its hard to keep count.
The numbers are so high that we have to keep stats . We cant remember it all . Behind every number of course is a human being with family and loved ones .
I ask you to rather follow the twitter account of Ian Cameron of Afriforum - @IanCameron23 - who try and visit as many farm attack scenes as he can. He only places verified information about South African farm attacks and murders. Believe me, you will get a better picture if you do that than merely reading a post by somebody staying in the UK. A person with suspect motives it seems .
The FB post by Ms Fleur can be regarded as fake news despite the fact that she call South African farm murders and attacks fake news. One can only wonder what motive she has and why she would try and deny what is actually happening on the ground.
I wont try and go into her motives. All I know is that she lies a lot. A lot !
I will need a few pages to pull Ms Fleur's lies apart one by one .
The first thing she does is to ask that people dont share stories of South African farm murders, even from reputable news sites. I wonder why she would do that ? If she is so certain that SA farmers are not under threat, why would she ask that people must not share such stories ?
People who know me and follow me on Facebook know that I hate fake news sites and I regularly share a list of all fake news sites in South Africa . It is so that there are a number of clickbait/fake news sites operating in South Africa - some of them Nigerian - who do try and exploit the situation .
But there are also good Facebook pages that only share verified information. Those are Maroela Media, Willshir Security, BKA Boere Krisis Aksie and South Africa Today .
Fact is SA farmers are under attack . This is the truth and undeniable . Facts speak for themselves.
There are not many attacks on black SA farmers, but there are some. There are also accounts of farmworkers being attacked, sometimes killed.
The issue of South African farm murders are complex, made worse by the fact that the SA Police dont keep official numbers. But statistics are being kept by Afriforum and agricultural body TLU -SA. Those numbers tell their own story .
South African whites wont touch extremists groups like the KKK with a bargepole.
We are proud people just trying to survive and provide for our own families. The Suidlanders that she is talking about is not even a group that features much in South Africa and almost never enter the SA pubic debate. They are more like a survivalist cult , a small insignificant organization .
It must also be noted that the mainstream media in South Africa and around the world also ignore the issue of murders on white South African farmers and for their own reasons . That is why we say that if people like Lauren Southern and Katie Hopkins want to help us, we are not going to say no. The emphasis will always be to carry true facts, not made up facts .
Ms Fleur is clearly out to sweep the matter under the carpet and what is worse is that she finds it necessary to lie and obfuscate.
I wonder why she would tell a clear lie that the murders on white farmers are decreasing when in fact it is escalating. Strange enough, the last figures she gives is those for 2015/2016 . And those numbers are faulty.
In 2011 there were 96 farm attacks and 48 murders, in 2012 it went up to 174 farm attacks and 53 murders . The numbers for 2016 is 357 farm attacks and 70 murders on farmers and for 2017 it was about 80 murders on farmers [ Google Plaasmoorde in 2017 reeds soveel as in 2016 - Maroela Media.
The most reliable figure recently mentioned by Ian Cameron is about 1700 murders on farmers and family members during the last 21 years . Most South Africans wont dispute that number, so why would an ex South African do it ? What is her agenda ? Why does she lie ?
Attacks on white South African farmers are extremely violent and murders are preceded by torture in many cases. Cases of farmers being tortured with boiling water and melted hot plastic dripped on them, have been reported many times. These facts are not in question .
I want to take you to a debate that happened in the SA Parliament in March 2017 that shows the callous attitude the governing ANC has towards attacks on white South African farmers .
“This past weekend the 62 year old Nicci Simpson was tied to a chair and tortured with an electrical drill, drilling holes in her feet, legs and knees. Her ribs were broken and she was stabbed multiple times. Luckily she survived this horrific attack.” – Anette Steyn MP, DA Shadow Minister of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries in the parliamentary debate on farm murders 14/3/2017
He said that it is not ordinary crime when people are tortured until they die, where a woman is raped for hours on end while her husband is forced to watch, where people’s heads are crushed and they are set alight, or where an electrical drill is used to drill holes in a woman’s feet after she had already been tortured in other ways. “In one instance in Parys, a farmer’s testicles were cut off and eaten by the attackers after they had cooked it. This is the shocking and uncomfortable truth of farm murders which can no longer be ignored,” Dr. Groenewald said. – Dr. Pieter Groenewald, FF Plus Leader in the debate on farm murders in Parliament 14/3/2017
Duduzile Promise Manana, ANC MP, shouted “Bury them alive!” when Dr Pieter Groenewald spoke about the plight of white farmers.
The photo accompanying this article is that of little Kayla Meyer who will forever be 9 years old .
Monty McCormack, 73, his son Kennith McCormack, 42, Kennith’s fiancée Marietjie Meyer and her daughter Kayla, were killed on a smallholding in Rodora, Randfontein in March 2016 . And no, she was not the only child murdered on a South African farm .
" Facebook friends! 🙏 STOP SHARING SOUTH AFRICAN "WHITE GENOCIDE"/FARM MURDER STORIES! 🙏 You are supporting white terrorists and white supremacist groups when you do this. They have purposely manufactured these unproven stories that are easily spread on social media with the aim of inciting hatred and division. Many of the pictures can be traced back to unrelated crimes in different countries at different times. Many of the people being interviewed in videos have admitted these brutal attacks never happened. I am SO TIRED of seeing these stories on my timeline, not because they are gory or upsetting, but because I hate that people I care about are pushing evil agendas created by evil people. We are all responsible adults, we can source our news from reliable sources, we all know HOW TO INTERNET.
The main group behind these stories are the Suidlanders (South African white nationalist group), who travelled abroad last year to spread their propaganda. Others promoting these unverified stories are the KKK (white terrorist group), Richard Spencer (white supremacist), the American Freedom Party (American white supremacist group), Lauren Southern (Canadian far-right personality), The Daily Stormer (far-right extremist website), Katie Hopkins (far-right instigator here in the UK) and plenty more. Look these people up, read the stuff published on these websites, and decide for yourself if you want to be aligned with them.
Ok, numbers. There were 49 farm murders in 2015/2016. This number was twice as high 20 years ago, and has only decreased over time. These are the only verified statistics we have about this issue, and they include people of colour, as should all house break-ins/robbery numbers in South Africa. These stories spread on Facebook are publishing false statistics that are not backed up by any research whatsoever. They are also intent on comparing South Africa to Zimbabwe when the two countries are completely different to each other historically, politically, economically - this is a false equivalence, and white South Africans IN PARTICULAR should be able to spot racist rhetoric like this.
Furthermore, there is NO genocide against white people in 2018 and using the term is completely inaccurate and offensive. Genocide is the systematic, organized mass murder of six million Jews during the Holocaust. Genocide is what happened in Rwanda, Darfur, Sudan, Kurdistan, Bosnia. Genocide is the government-sponsored extermination of nearly the entire native population of North America. Genocide is reducing nearly a million Australian aborigines to less than 50,000 in less than ten years. 49 murders is NOT A GENOCIDE. There is NO organized mass murder taking place against white people ANYWHERE in the world, let alone one sponsored by the government or the entire black population of South Africa.
In fact, white people are less likely to be murdered than ANY OTHER RACE group. They make up just 1.8% of murder victims in South Africa. "White genocide" is a dangerous and disgusting conspiracy theory - the same one used by Anders Behring Breivik to justify killing 77 people in the 2011 Norway attacks. It is the narrative that fuels the terrifying hatred and bloodlust that you saw on the faces of the Charlottesville neo-Nazis last year. The "white genocide" myth is well-researched and information about this and other aspects of white supremacy are easy to access in this day and age. There is NO excuse to be sharing false propaganda online in 2018 "