Farm attackers shout ‘Kill the Boer’; stab woman with spear

Henry

A couple from Pietermaritzburg are trying to pick up the pieces of their lives after they were attacked in their home on a farm in the district.

During the attack about two weeks ago, Amanda Platt was beaten with a bolt cutter and lead pipes and also stabbed in the groin with a wooden spear.

She and her husband, Tim, fought desperately for an hour to keep the attackers out of the house.

The couple heard noises outside the house at around 2am on August 17. Four attackers tried to enter the house through the back door.

“They forced open the security gate and then began to tear down the wooden door. Tim and I haunted to stop them from entering the house,” says Amanda.

“I shouted: ‘Just go!’ and the man grabbed my hand through the broken door and hit me on the arm with some object. He pulled my arm while shouting: ‘Kill the farmer, kill the farmer’.

“I was able to break free from his grip and ran away to activate the alarm. I activated the alarm three times, without any help arriving.

“The attackers were merciless and persistent – nothing deterred them, not even the alarm and not the fact that we fought back.”

As the couple fought at the back door to stop the men from entering the house, they heard glass breaking.

During the struggle, two of the men went to the couple’s bedroom window and broke the pane and window frame, thus gaining access to the house. Amanda confronted them in the bedroom with a wooden spear and she was hit over the head with a bolt cutter.

“I fell to the ground and asked the heavenly Father to give me strength. They grabbed the spear and stabbed me in the groin.”

The two men in the bedroom called their two accomplices to the back door to come through the window into the house.

“It was my chance to get away. I escaped from the house. I ran to the farm owner’s house and grabbed a weapon and ran back to our house. When I returned, the attackers had already fled.”

According to Amanda, the attackers looted, among other things, TVs, mobile phones and cables.

Thanks to the quick response of the local farming community and civil security services, six suspects were apprehended.

The six – who have been identified as Malawian nationals – appeared in the Pietermaritzburg Magistrate’s Court on Monday.

RNews has inquired with the police to get more clarity on the complaint against the suspects, but has not yet received any feedback. Comments will be updated as they are received.

The attack left the couple extremely traumatized and they have not yet returned to their home.

“We are afraid to go back, but when we return, we will be more ready and prepared. This (incident) was also a wake-up call that we need to step up security at home.”

‘Incitement to violence’

Jacques Broodryk, AfriForum’s spokesperson on community safety, believes that the ‘Kill the Boer, kill the Farmer’ chant is nothing other than the incitement to violence against a minority group.

“I can only accept that those who try to tell us the song is just a metaphor are actually supporting these attacks,” says Broodryk.

AfriForum will be in the Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein next week to appeal against the Equality Court’s decision that the “Kill the Boer” chant is not hate speech.

“As the evidence continues to mount that chants like ‘Kill the Boer’ do in fact have a terrible effect, it becomes increasingly difficult for those who excuse it not to appear apathetic towards victims of violent crime when they happen to be farmers,” says Ernst Van Zyl, campaign officer for strategy and content at AfriForum.