Police urge farmers to identify recovered livestock before auction

MARCH 8, 2017
Police urge farmers to identify recovered livestock before auction

Efforts to curb stock theft in the Eastern Cape are yielding positive results, police said on Wednesday.

"Stock theft operations held in the Mthatha, Ngcobo, Qumbu, Tsolo, Mqanduli, Flagstaff and Bizana  areas, from 1 December 2016 to date, have led to the arrest of  377 suspects and the confiscation of  252 cattle, 218 sheep, 212 goats and 129 horses, which were either found in  the possession of the suspects or abandoned in grazing fields," described police spokesperson, Colonel Sibongile Soci.

"The stock is being kept at the Qumbu Municipality Pound, the Tsolo Municipality Pound, the Flagstaff Pound and the Mqanduli Pound."

Colonel Soci called on all farmers / livestock owners in and around these areas to visit the above mentioned pounds as soon as they can, as the stock is to be sold very soon.

"We urge the farmers/ livestock owners to bring along an SAP 429 form, which is proof that they have opened cases for the lost stock," he said.

If the stock is branded, the stock owners must bring with a brand certificate.

Local SAPS Stock Theft Units will be able to assist with enquiries.

“The theft of livestock is not seen as just another theft of property, often even small numbers of livestock represent the livelihood of a family and their means to sustain themselves, hence SAPS views Stock Theft cases in a very serious light," said Eastern Cape SAPS Provincial Commissioner, Lt Gen Liziwe Ntshinga.

"We have implemented a special project to enhance the capacity of stock theft units throughout the province and these arrests and recoveries are the outcome of that project."

Police have urged farmers / livestock owners to count their stock regularly and immediately report any missing stock or stock recovered.

"It is important that farmers and/or livestock owners brand their livestock. This becomes very crucial in identifying stock and for court proceedings," said Colonel Soci. 

"It is also important that farmers/ livestock owners comply with the Stock Theft Act and ensure that the necessary documentation is issued when stock is sold and transported. These documents can be obtained from local police stations."

Anyone who has lost stock or have any information on stock theft, can contact Lt Col Sello Rute, attached to SAPS Provincial Detective Services on 082 319 9257.