Attention was brought to South Africa last month when President Trump tweeted about how the government was seizing land from their white citizens and has only grown since.
The president received lots of pushback for his tweet, but there is some legitimacy to it. The murder rate has been growing increasingly, creating a “war zone” like culture of living, according to the South Africa police minister.
Their murder rate has been increasing for the past six years, each year knocking out the last. In the last 12 months, there have been over 20,3000 people killed in South Africa, with an average of 57 murders a day during the present time.
“Many murders were linked to gang violence in Western Cape province, whose capital is Cape Town,” The Daily Mail reported. “The numbers reflect a 6.9 percent year-on-year increase, one of the highest per capita since the end of apartheid 24 years ago.”
Police Minister Bheki Cele has warned reporters and news outlets about the numbers, calling South Africa a “war zone.”
“The figures that always scare me are murder figures,” Cele added. “South Africans must not take it as a norm that they can be hijacked, robbed and killed every day. We have to pick up the ball and change the situation for the better.”
Francois Beukman, a leader of the police oversight committee, called the murder rate both “alarming and totally unacceptable.”
The jump in crime and murder rates comes at a time when tensions between white and black farmers in South Africa are rising in the wake of the government pushing plans to “redistribute” land that belongs to white farmers to poor black South Americans to try to right the wrongs of a racial injustice past.
The process began last month when South African officials began to take land from white farmers “filing legal papers seeking to expropriate two farms for one-tenth of their estimated value.”
“The filings, involving two game farms in the northern province of Limpopo, come as the African National Congress government is seeking to amend the country’s constitution to allow outright seizures of land with no compensation. The ANC’s leader also has recently argued that pure expropriation is allowed anyway now ‘in the public interest,'” said the report.
But the murdering of white South African farmers isn’t exactly something that is new to the country.
“Activists say South African authorities are tacitly approving attacks on the country’s white farmers, with one being murdered every five days, and the police turning a blind eye to the violence,” a May report from Newsweek said. “The white nationalist lobbying group AfriForum says that when lawmakers passed a motion last month which could see land being seized from farmers without compensation, it sent a message that landowners could be attacked with impunity.”
“Our rural areas are trapped in a crime war. Although the South African government denies that a violence crisis is staring rural areas in the face, the numbers prove that excessive violence plague these areas,” Ian Cameron, AfriForum’s Head of Safety, said.