Murder could fuel violence: Agri SA

2010-04-09 22:19

Johannesburg - AWB leader Eugene Terre'Blanche's murder contributed to an "extremely delicate" situation which needs government intervention, Agri SA said on Friday.

"We want to appeal to President (Jacob) Zuma to familiarise himself with the current disconcerting realities impacting on agriculture and rural communities," said its president Johannes Möller in a statement.

"In recent times we were faced with so-called cultural songs which should have been rejected with contempt across the board, political utterances with respect to the possible nationalisation of land came to the fore and farmers were unfoundedly portrayed as cruel in their conduct towards farm workers."

Failure to address violent incidents faced by farmers could "turn moderate people into extremists... a situation South Africa wishes to avoid", he said.

"I trust that those we wish to engage with will, given a very delicate position at present, also appreciate the urgent need for such an engagement," he said.

Möller cautioned Agri SA members against taking the law into their own hands as the organisation would not accept responsibility for any illegal actions related to avenging Terre'Blanche's death.

"It is of immediate importance that co-operation with the police force should be enhanced with a view to improved rural safety," said Möller, adding that the organisation had requested a meeting with the ANC leadership and Zuma to address rural crimes.