Mokopane farmers survive brutal panga attack

Limpopo farmers Maria Lebelo and Samuel Ngobeni survived a brutal attack on their farm. Agri Limpopo says, “One attack on our farming community is one too many”

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An injury to one is an injury to all, says Agri Limpopo after two farmers were brutally attacked with pangas on a farm just outside Mokopane.

The province is reeling with shock following the incident in the early hours of Wednesday, 21 July.

It is alleged that two balaclava-wearing men attacked 58-year-old Maria Lebelo and 73-year-old Samuel Ngobeni at Syferfontein (section 298). Lebelo is said to have sustained injuries on both her legs and right cheek.

Farm attack: Deidré Carter, CEO of Agri Limpopo. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi
Deidré Carter, CEO of Agri Limpopo. Photo: Supplied/Food For Mzansi

According to the Limpopo police, who confirmed that the incident was being investigated, both victims were taken into the main farmhouse and tied up with electrical cords.

The perpetrators then proceeded to search the house and stole a cell phone, cash, a tablet computer, computer and a bush camera. They then fled the scene on foot but were picked up by an unknown vehicle.

Deidré Carter, chief executive of Agri Limpopo, says, “One attack on our farming community is one too many. As Agri Limpopo, we remain concerned about farm and rural safety.”

Rural safety strategy

This is the third serious farm attack in Limpopo this year. On 30 April, a farm manager was beaten unconscious and tied up on a farm in Diepkuil, north of Thabazimbi, by multiple attackers who attempted to gain access to a safe.

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Three days later, two farmers were attacked on the road to their farm in Deerpark, outside Tzaneen. The farmers were driving to town when they noticed a suspicious man crossing a dirt road.

Upon inspection, the man allegedly started shooting them with an automatic rifle. One of the men sustained injuries to his head and their vehicle was peppered with bullets. The suspect fled the scene.

Carter says Agri Limpopo remains committed to working in close collaboration with the police and other role players in implementing the rural safety strategy for Limpopo. “Broadly put, we are satisfied with the efforts of giving effect to the rural safety strategy here in Limpopo albeit that there is always room for improvement.”

ALSO READ: Top tips to protect yourself against livestock theft

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