ANC and DA agree: Farm attacks must stop

2017-05-24 18:30
Senzeni Zokwana (Picture: Supplied)

Senzeni Zokwana (Picture: Supplied)

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Cape Town - There is at least one thing on which the African National Congress and the Democratic Alliance agree: The killing of farmers and farm workers must stop.

When presenting his budget to Parliament, Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Minister Senzeni Zokwana asked for a moment of silence for farmers and farm workers who have lost their lives.

"We need to protect farmers and farm workers," Zokwana said amid cheer of "hear! hear!" from the DA benches.

He said the debates about agriculture should not be politicised and called for an end to racism.

"If we want to succeed, let's embrace transformation."

He said it was incorrect that there is a wholly "lily-white owned" industry like fisheries.

Fallacy

DA MP Annette Steyn agreed that the debates around agriculture should not be politicised and said the DA was worried about political statements that scare off investors. She also called for an end to attacks on farmers and farm workers.

"Farm attacks must be classified as a priority crime," she said. She said this would lead to more resources to the under-capacitated police.

Zokwana's deputy minister, Bheki Cele, responded to Steyn, whom he referred to as "Mama Steyn".

"I fully agree with you, we have to deal with the killing of farmers and farm workers."

He then scolded her for not speaking about recent events in Coligny. Steyn raised a point of order and said she referred to both farmers and farm workers.

Cele also said he invited Steyn to accompany him to a farming community on the West Coast, where "white DA farmers" are trying to squeeze out a farmer named Mohamed. He reiterated his invitation.

"We can go now," Steyn responded.

Freedom Front Plus MP Pieter Groenewald thanked Zokwana for the moment of silence for farmers and farm workers.

He said it was a fallacy that all black farmers are inadequate, and all white farmers are racists who abuse their workers.

"Agriculture decisions must be made on cold facts," he said.

Zokwana also said his department will in 2017 finish a climate change mitigation plan, and help the drought-stricken Western Cape.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  ffplus  |  bheki cele  |  senzeni zokwana  |  cape town  |  crime  |  farm attacks  |  politics

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