News24

Farmer bust for illegal watering

2012-03-06 12:00

Johannesburg - A Deneysville farmer faces criminal charges after he was caught illegally irrigating his maize crop with water from the Vaal Dam, according to a report on Tuesday.

The clampdown coincided with the beginning of National Water Week, Beeld reported.

Nigel Adams, head of the Blue Scorpions, the unit tasked with enforcing the National Water Act, said the Vaal catchment area was under "enormous pressure" and farmers had to realise that siphoning water out of the system would not be permitted.

Members of the Blue Scorpions unit locked the farmer's pumps on Monday.

Johannes Moller, president of Agri SA, said it was a pity that farmers were being targeted in this regard, as they were actually minor offenders.

"Although illegal irrigation by some farmers is certainly worrying, there are other factors that pose an even bigger threat to the availability and quality of fresh water," Moller said.

Agri SA felt that government should be scrutinising the issue to pinpoint bigger offenders.

Meanwhile, Minister of Water Affairs Edna Molewa warned local councils on Monday to "get their house in order" to avoid polluting the Vaal catchment area.

Comments
  • Groot - 2012-03-06 12:17

    All part and parcel of the total onslaught against farmers and farmland...

  • Thokozane - 2012-03-06 12:34

    They must just let the farmer go, maybe give him a warning, at the end of the day, he is feeding the nation. People get away with stealing electricity everyday, I think his was a minor offence that shouldn't even warrant criminal charges, let alone news coverage.

      Mo - 2012-03-06 12:41

      You sir are a gentleman, and I respect your opinion. Thank you for not being biased. Everyone on News24 is quick to play the race card. Thank you for seeing it as it is.

      gordon.wolfaardt - 2012-03-06 12:47

      I agree, well done for not turning this into a race thing again...

      Phillipine - 2012-03-06 12:49

      I think we might as well let those who steel electricity go because they are using it to feed themself. Stupid logic. No need to defend white people, he is a black farmer.

      Frank - 2012-03-06 13:59

      Are you for real? Minor crime? The man/woman/girl was not stealing a bucket full. Saw it on eNews last night. They had proper pipes connected to the irrigation system. I guess we can say Clover can connect directly to the electricity grid without paying since they feed the nation with milk. The farmer is a business person who makes profit from his produce. He must pay for the water he uses. So should the people stealing electricity.

  • cliff.slabbert - 2012-03-06 12:36

    Poor farmers again! I suppose when they all leave and South Africa is a dust bowl the "brilliant ANC" will scratch their heads and wonder what happened.

  • Anthony - 2012-03-06 12:40

    wow, what f#$king next?

  • Archie - 2012-03-06 12:44

    Ask the farmer if he has been waiting for how many years to get irrigation rights.He is a farmer who by the way keeps all those fat stomachs fill with food.many farmers break the law because they have to survive,if you are white there are no gov,handouts. in badplaas the gov, bought out a going concern(farm) for sixty nine million rand.a few years later they need eighty five million rand to rehabilitate the farm and are looking for private enterprise involvement in running the place(farmers weekly story).Now that is real incompetence and stupidity.This could be the new way of bleeding the country dry and starving the poor at the same time.when all the real commercial farmers leave famine will prevail.

      Vicker - 2012-03-06 13:12

      Very good point Archie. Up till a month ago, one of the biggest factors in granting water-usage rights was the colour of one's skin. AgriSA managed to have this point ruled unconstitutional. But because of it there are a lot of white farmers who have not been granted water-usage rights.

      Dawood - 2012-03-06 13:29

      true..but stealing is a crime whether practised by a black or white, farmer or prostitute..

  • Mikkel - 2012-03-06 13:14

    " 'n boer maak 'n plan "

  • Barefoot - 2012-03-06 13:15

    I don't know why or when this law was made but just commenting from my feelings would not be a very intelligent thing to do, after all most industries have regulations i guess this is one in the farming sector seems a bit harsh considering they just want grow their crops

      Henri James Christie - 2012-03-06 18:00

      Yep, to feed the masses, including those morons who shout the odds without thinking.

  • Hunter - 2012-03-06 13:45

    I do not see them locking the gates of mines with no legal water use licenses and why warn municipalities again - they have been warned many times in the last 10 years! Be consistent in applying the law, please Mr Adams.

      Archie - 2012-03-06 14:05

      all the mining rights were given to formerly disadvantaged groups,ie anc/ cadres/tenderpreneurs.Almost all were connected to the highest offices in parliament.most of the new mpumalanga mines dont operate legally or close down and leave, once the seam is mined.water rights have been used as a means to block currently disadvantaged minorities from succeeding in farming or mining enterprises

  • Sean - 2012-03-06 14:00

    What about all the sqauters along SA's rivers that pollute the water with sewerage and other rubbish? Do the blue scorpions arrest them? No, but they are one of the biggest threats to SA's water security. Top offenders are the many ANC run municipalities who pump raw sewerage into the rivers and dams because the have allowed the treatment plants to collapse through bad administration. Let's see them in jail too please.

  • ludlowdj - 2012-03-06 15:00

    OK a bit confused, "Members of the Blue Scorpions unit locked the farmer's pumps on Monday" this statement indicates to me that the pump system was on the farmers land not the at the dam or on other property otherwise they would have just confiscated it? Also "Vaal catchment area was under "enormous pressure" indicates that the use of water in the catchment area is illegal, this would include boreholes and wells on private property, which goes back to our law that says you own the land but the government owns everything in the ground including mineral wealth and water supplies So the question is did he take water from the catchment area or from the dam itself, these are completely separate areas, and more importantly did it come from his property and is this property in the catchment area?

  • Mtshezi Yonk'insipho Iyawasha Mkhize - 2012-03-06 15:01

    Hehehehehehe, I hate how we reduce everything to race, but it's funny too. Proudly South African as narrow minded as we can be as a people.....I hope we can grow out of this someday, if not us let's then at least help out kids to b free of this tendency which denies us the opportunity to accept and tolerate each other.... I love my country!

  • nchukana - 2012-03-06 17:22

    It is in the genes first land now water what next will they still the sky?

      Bomb - 2012-03-07 07:29

      probably not cause then you will claim you owned it first!!!!

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