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Has our country turned into an armed robbery scene?

September 2015


JANNIE DE VILLIERS, uitvoerende hoofbestuurder/CEO

The other day I took time to read an article by Dawie Roodt in which he related his experience of the tragedy of an armed robbery in his house; I read it carefully and attentively.

The detail of the process of people unlawfully encroaching on your privacy and then with a weapon in hand have the power to tie you up in your own house and then blithely rifle through all your cupboards and drawers, unceremoniously evaluating your property to decide what they are going to take and what they are going to leave behind.

They are not looking for food. With large, muddy footprints they trudge through your emotions relating to sentimental or inherited items and moreover use your loved ones’ physical wellbeing against you to further get blood from a stone.

The scars on a producer’s forearms whom I once met at a rugby game and who had survived a farm attack, flashed through my mind. The emotions of helplessness which overcame me when I read the article, suddenly felt familiar to me and I wondered why.

Mercifully I was not present the six times my belongings have been stolen, but then it hit me: It is the same feeling I get when attending the land negotiations meetings! We sit there representing those who own land/farms. Then there are those who represent the ones with the majority vote in the country who unceremoniously take our sentimental and private property to hand out as if it all belongs to them, while we have to look on powerless.

Inherited land; birth right land; hard earned land…There is no room for debate. The one with the power in hand does all the talking and takes all the decisions about what stays and what goes. Has the majority vote in this country now become a gun in hand rather than the privilege to serve like in other democracies in the world? Has our country turned into an armed robbery scene? Is that all that remains for us – to look on purely as spectators as we as the victims in the scene before us, are robbed?

Was that how many black people who were prohibited from owning land felt when it was taken from them unceremoniously – also their land of inheritance and farms of birth?

Certainly there must be more to life than just these cycles of robbery – dependent on who has the “weapon” in hand to determine who will own what in the country! It makes me scream on the inside – surely it cannot be! I do not sleep well nowadays.

Then the picture of producers who went to pray alongside the N1, reaching out to God and pleading that He breaks this cycle of robbery and destruction, flashes through my mind. The previous regime has done almost irreparable damage to our country. Are our current leaders really going to repeat this with eyes wide open?

It is going to require extraordinary leadership and supernatural grace to steer our country through this process. Dawie closes by encouraging all South Africans to stand up, not to fight with force, but to stand up for what is right and not to flee to Australia. Let us continue to do the right things right for all the right reasons.

I lift my eyes to the mountains surrounding me; where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord!

Publication: September 2015

Section: Features