farms south africa
Image Credit: Afriforum

SAAI has called for farmers to be ready and “extra vigilant” in the midst of the extensive looting in KwaZulu-Natal, Gauteng and elsewhere in South Africa.

“They must remain in constant contact with each other and their organised agricultural structures, report incidents and keep their farms, families and workers safe,” SAAI said in a statement.

“At Saai we do all in our power to support families on their farms who are in distress, have to flee or are in danger of sustaining damages as a result of fires and looting. In addition to our network partners, there is an extensive presence of civil structures, farm watches and other organisations in a large part of the country that are serious about supporting farmers and communities.”

Dr Theo de Jager, SAAI Chairperson, said although farmers welcome the deployment of the South African National Defence Force against the looters, 2 500 soldiers are not nearly enough.

“While shopping malls, farms, main roads and vehicles are burning, South Africans have a right to know what happened to the rest of our military capacity, equipment and soldiers.

“Images of looting multitudes who commit arson, steal and shoot are being broadcast across the world. Saai is inundated with messages of sympathy, concern and empathy from agricultural organisations in New Zealand, Canada, Japan, Italy, Hungary, Tunisia and many more countries. Our government does not have a good story to tell,” said De Jager.

SAAI blames the ANC’s policy of cadre deployment for the current collapse of law and order.

“Unless strong enough leadership emerges to solve the current crisis, farmers of all sizes, races and cultural groups in South Africa will remain vulnerable and dependent on themselves and each other to protect their farms and families against criminal attacks,” said SAAI.