Police minister Bheki Cele and state security minister Ayanda Dlodlo are expected to meet the family of farm murder victim, Brendin Horner, on Tuesday.
Following the protests in Senekal last week, where, what was meant to be a peaceful march, turned violent with police vehicles set alight. Police Minister Bheki Cele, who has been vocal about his belief that farm murders are not a serious issue in the country, will now intervene personally to de-escalate the rising tensions between white and black South Africans. The stakeholder meetings are intended to ensure tensions in Senekal don’t boil over.
The Senekal protests took social media by storm, with several viral posts creating an elevated sense of racial disharmony throughout South Africa, which has never truly recovered from the divides created across racial lines by the system of Apartheid.
“If we are to succeed at tackling violent crime, particularly in rural communities, we must confront this trauma and challenge the racial attitudes that prevent a united response,” President Cyril Ramaphosa said in his response to the events yesterday.
And today, The Sowetan reports, Ministers Cele and Dlodlo are also due to meet the family of murder victim, Brendin Horner, as well as various organised farming structures as part of an attempt to “quell the simmering tensions”.
Sekwetje Isaiah Mahlamba, 32, and Sekola Piet Matlaletsa, 44, appeared in the Senekal Magistrate’s Court last week, and protesters demanded that the police hand them over. A 51-year-old man was arrested and appeared in the same court in connection to the protests.
Police say an “unruly group” of farmers forced their way into the court building where the suspects were detained and demanded to take over custody. Members of the group damaged court property while forcing their way to the cells. The suspect arrested for his role in the arrests will appear in court again on Tuesday.