A claim that the government was committing genocide against Afrikaner farmers was “ludicrous”, government spokesperson Themba Maseko said on Tuesday.
“We think it is ludicrous in the extreme,” he said in response to a petition by an unnamed farmer to the United Nations.
“There is no wholesale attempt or process to commit genocide against Afrikaner farmers. Although we acknowledge that there is crime affecting farmers, government is dealing with all incidents of crime, not just attacks against farmers.
“It is ridiculous, totally ridiculous.”
In a petition submitted to the UN, a farmer, who wants to remain anonymous, accused the ANC-led government of committing genocide against the “Afrikaner Boer”.
“The second act of genocide committed against the Afrikaner Boer nation is by the ruling ANC government in South Africa,” read the preamble to the petition, which was posted on the website www.stopafrikanervolksmoord.co.za on Tuesday.
“No doubt that the perpetrators of the crime against humanity of apartheid, has become the victims of those people whom they oppressed during the years of apartheid. This petition acknowledges the crime of apartheid,” it read.
It was submitted to the office of the UN special adviser on the prevention of genocide, assistant secretary general Francis Deng on Wednesday, according to lawyer Fanie van der Walt.
He said he was acting on behalf of the farmer, who had relocated for his own safety.
The petition asked that the UN Security Council and General Assembly “allow the study of the possibility of the ANC government using criminal gangs [including foreigners and particularly Zimbabweans and Mozambique citizens] as well as through the clandestine use of the South African National Intelligence Agency (NIA), the utilisation of the [Umkhonto weSizwe (MK)] veteran soldiers and the South African Police Services, to execute these farmer murders and attacks”.
The farmer also wants United States President Barack Obama to intervene.
He claimed that the number of commercial farmers in South Africa dropped from 90 000 to 40 000 between 1994 and 2010 and that 36 500 Afrikaner farmers had been murdered.
He said the first act of genocide against the Afrikaner was during the second Anglo Boer War, when British forces burnt down Afrikaners’ farms and put their women and children into concentration camps.
“This Afrikaner genocide, now in commission and committed against the Afrikaner nation is undoubtedly the result of the apartheid past and the result of the racial and ethnic hatred of whites by black South Africans.”
According to his analysis, “the ANC started their highly effective clandestine policy of genocide and crimes against humanity through the deliberate implementation and very effective utilisation of extremely high rates of extreme violent crime against white Afrikaner farmers during 1986 whilst still in exile”.
When the ANC took power in government in 1994, these attacks were “escalated through deliberate state inaction, state neglect and refusal to act against crime”.
Gun laws, which he said made it difficult to own a firearm, had “greatly contributed” to the rapid increase of crimes committed against the Afrikaner.
‘Arsenal of genocidal weapons’
It is all an extension of the ANC’s armed struggle and its goal was to “remove the white minority from South Africa”.
Men were especially being targeted.
The ANC’s “very effective arsenal of genocidal weapons” included:
- incitement by high-ranking government officials through speeches
- inaction against crime
- underutilisation of security forces
- draconian gun laws
- removal of the rural commando
- the threat of the nationalisation of land
- a proposed media tribunal
- using former MK soldiers to take the fight to the white community
- the disuse of the police force
- affirmative action
- killing members of the group
- causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group
- deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part
- imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group
- forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.”
- The UN defines genocide as: “any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such
Factors behind it could include conflicts over land, power, security and expressions of group identity such as language, religion and culture; patterns of discrimination, overt justification for discriminatory practices; a history of genocide or human rights violations against a particular group; denial by the perpetrators; references to past human rights violations committed against a possible perpetrator group as justification.
The farmer wrote that a team led by President Jacob Zuma and ANC Youth League president Julius Malema, described as the “Jacob Zuma-Malema team”, supported by the South African Communist Party, had the potential to destroy the economy within months if there was no international intervention.
He asked, among other things, that Deng investigate his claims of rape and torture, raise international awareness of them, and commission a study of crime in South Africa.
Comment was not immediately available from the UN’s New York office. – Sapa