[FROM THE ARCHIVES] The Silent War
𝗧𝗵𝗶𝘀 𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘆 𝗼𝗿𝗶𝗴𝗶𝗻𝗮𝗹𝗹𝘆 𝗮𝗶𝗿𝗲𝗱 𝗼𝗻 𝟲 𝗝𝘂𝗻𝗲 𝟮𝟬𝟮𝟭.
On the Mpumalanga Highveld, a silent war erupts every night as the community fights livestock theft and crime that has been spiralling out of control over the last few years. In April, a group of farmworkers protested – ostensibly for employment – at the entrance of the farm Pampoenkraal near Piet Retief. Two brothers, Mgcini and Zenzele Coka, joined the protest. When a scuffle between the protesters and a group of farmers broke out, the Coka brothers were killed and led to the arrest of four farmers and a farmworker who were released on bail three weeks later. At the end of May, another farmer and his entire farm management team were arrested on charges of murder. Court proceedings have been marked by crowds gathering outside. Carte Blanche investigates the underlying issues that led to the clash and asks: what lies behind the tensions that finally spilled over?