Solidarity: Rural Network response to another killing by Farm Watch

26 07 2010

Another life has been claimed by the farm watch in eMasangweni at the farm owned by Mr. Channel of eNkwalini(Eshowe)

On the 23 July 2010 Mr. Patrick Mpanza was shot dead by the farm watch that is responsible for the farm of Mr. Channel. This incident happened while he was walking with his four kids, whom are all girls. According to the child that is the eye witness the farm watch told them to lie down on the ground, two of the four kids ran away while the other one was left with the father on the ground; however the father refused to lie down. By so doing the farm watch then shot him on the forehead.

The child that was left with the father asked the father if he was hurt, and the father replied by saying yes I am hurt. The child asked where you are hurt. That was the last words from the father, he couldn’t even reply to the child’s question. Later the child realized that the father had passed away.

Two of the three children were taken by the farm watches somewhere, away from the scene until the SAPS came and find them there. These two children who witnessed the shooting of their father were found by the SAPS with the farm watches. What is amazing is that the one of the two children who remained with their father while he was shot at so the farm watch that shot her dad is now injured at the back of his head. The farm watch claimed to the SAPS that he was injured by the deceased, which raised some questions of how can a person with a gun be able to be injured by a person who is already dead.

This is just an one of many cases where by either the farm owner or his farm watch will kill or even torture the farm dwellers and get away with it without being arrested or sentenced for their doings. Some of the cases that are similar to this incident where by the very same farm watched shot and killed two students from the very same Mpanza family in 2006. This case has been delayed from 2006 until today. This has led to the formation of the alliance of the social movements within KwaZulu Natal to intervene on this delayed case, such as Abahlali baseMjondolo, Rural Network, Regional SACP. The next court appearance for the first Mpanza whose teenagers were killed will be on the 30 July 2010 at Eshowe Court. All media are welcome.

We are sick and tired of the brutal killing by the farm watches as well as the farm owners to the community and get away with cruelty. We again asked the intervention of the Minister of Land affairs Ms Lydia Johnson and Minister of Safety and Security Willies Mchunu to find an immediate end to this killing of the innocent people on their own land. The feelings of the community members are that the farm owners have decided to declare the war against community using the farm watch. As the leaders we are very concern that this may lead to turmoil, whereby there will be a fight between the community and farm watch.

For more information please contact:

Mr. Mbhekiseni Mavuso on 072- 279-2634 (Rural Network S.A.)
Mr. Mduduzi Sibisi on 073-387-9265 (Rural Network, Chairperson of Emasangweni)
Ms. Zodwa Nsibande on 031-304 6420 (Abahlali baseMjondolo Movement)

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