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DA congress delegates to hear calls for commission of inquiry into farm murders


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DA congress delegates to hear calls for commission of inquiry into farm murders

Democratic Alliance logo

31st March 2023

By: News24Wire


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Delegates at the Democratic Alliance (DA) federal congress may vote for the party to push President Cyril Ramaphosa to appoint a commission of inquiry to probe farm murders.

DA members will vote on this resolution proposal at the party's congress, which starts in Midrand on Saturday and concludes on Sunday.


There has been growing contestation from political parties and the government about murders on farms being classified as distinct from other crimes.

In 2020, Police Minister Bheki Cele told News24 all "fear crimes" were taken seriously, including farm murders.


Lobby groups, including AfriForum, have long decried what they believed was a rise in farm murders.

The DA also joined the chorus of those calling for a specific classification for farm murders. Delegates at the party's congress in 2020 voted for farm murders to be classified as hate crimes.

This year's DA congress will see the party debate whether to push Ramaphosa to appoint a commission of inquiry to investigate farm murders. This was one of the draft resolutions circulated among party members ahead of the congress.

The party's resolution stated that the government needed to take farm murders as seriously as economic sabotage.

"Again, farm murders are on the rise in South Africa. There is little progress in successfully prosecuting farm murders across South Africa. Farm murders and attacks pose a direct threat towards food security. Farm murders and criminal attacks on farm workers must be considered economic crimes and a threat to economic growth.

"In South Africa, job losses because of crimes on farms in rural areas are tough to recover. The South African government has failed to recognise the severity of the impact of these crimes on farms, and the economic losses accompanied by farm murders and attacks on farms," the resolution read.

Another resolution, which speaks to the DA's long-standing debate on race in the country, proposes that the government forgoes race as a form of classification. The party has long campaigned against broad-based black economic empowerment and the need for non-racialism.

The resolution proposes that other forms of classification, including culture, language, social status and employment, be used "as a more suitable measure of societal groupings".

"In line with our values of non-racialism, the Democratic Alliance should begin the journey of disposing of racial classification within our lexicon and the analysis of polling data in terms of homogeneous racial categories and move away from the last remnants of an apartheid structure that, to this day, is designed to divide our citizens based on the colour of our skin," the policy resolution read.

"The apartheid structure of racial classification was used as a method to divide our country and discourage unity by creating artificial, homogeneous groupings, ignoring underlying traits such as culture, language and dialects, and economic disparity. The classification of a race group cannot adequately describe segments of our very diverse country and therefore is an unacceptable tool to gauge the needs of various communities accurately," it read.

Congress delegates must vote on the resolutions before they are adopted as official party policy.



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