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WATCH | 'Communities are under siege'- John Steenhuisen weighs in on 'scourge of farm attacks'

08 October 2020 - 09:49 By cebelihle bhengu
Democratic Alliance leader John Steenhuisen has weighed in on recent violent protests over farm attacks in the Free State.
Democratic Alliance leader John Steenhuisen has weighed in on recent violent protests over farm attacks in the Free State.
Image: Ruvan Boshoff

DA leader John Steenhuisen has called on South Africans to stop pointing fingers and unite behind the fight against farm murders.

In a video message on Wednesday, Steenhuisen said the DA is concerned about farm attacks as the community of Senekal in the Free State reels from the murder of 21-year old farm manager Brendin Horner.

“We need to come together as South Africans, united in the common purpose to beat the scourge of farm attacks and to bring the perpetrators to justice. It doesn't serve to point fingers about who is wrong and who is right. We need to send a serious message to the criminals that this will not be tolerated any more,” he said.

Steenhuisen said the government is not doing enough to ensure the safety of members of the rural communities, who are constantly “under siege” and are being “preyed on” by criminals.

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“Sadly, Brendin Horner's case is not an isolated one. It is the daily lived experience of many farmers, farmworkers and rural communities across SA. They are under siege and in the grip of violent criminals who prey mercilessly on our farmers, farmworkers and members of our rural communities,” he said.

“And the worst part is, they appear to do so with absolute impunity, with the perpetrators never being brought to justice.”

Steenhuisen said the lack of accountability has led to anger and resentment among members of the rural communities.

Violent scenes broke out on Tuesday after the court appearance of two suspects in Horner's murder. Angry farmers damaged court property as they forced entry into the cells, demanding that the suspects be handed over to them.

Outside the court, scores of protesters condemned Horner's killing and held placards stating “Say all their names” and “Enough is enough”.

A police van was also overturned and set alight.

A 52-year old man was arrested on Wednesday in connection with the violent protests. He is expected to be charged with malicious damage to property and public violence.


Farm manager Brendin Horner's body was found tied to a farm gate after he was killed by unknown attackers on October 2 2020. The death has outraged agricultural leaders and community members from Senekal and surrounding areas who demanded justice.