The civil rights organisation AfriForum’s community safety team this past week spent a day with the Engelbrecht family near Fochville after two members of this family – Fanie (78) and Colleen (74) – were brutally murdered during a farm attack on 13 May. A German public TV broadcaster – Zweites Deutsches Fernsehen (ZDF) – accompanied AfriForum during the visit where they engaged in conversation with Jo-an and Sua Engelbrecht, the murdered couple’s son and daughter-in-law, so that the story of the Engelbrechts can be told by the broadcaster.
Jo-an discovered his parents’ dead bodies in their house on the farm Welgevonden. Colleen was, amongst other things, burnt with an iron before she was strangled and had her throat cut.
“We need to ensure that each victim’s story is told and that nobody simply becomes a statistic, the stories of our people need to be acknowledged by the world,” says Ian Cameron, AfriForum’s Head of Community Safety.
Cameron believes the world must see the South African government’s repeated failure to implement plans for rural safety and that communities are resigned to their own fate when it comes to safety. This follows only a week after Lindiwe Sisulu, Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, mentioned that gruesome and exaggerated stories about South Africa are being spread abroad, as well as shortly after Bheki Cele, Minister of Police, once again refused to declare farm murders as priority crimes.