Brutal murder of Northern Cape hotel owner in ’labour dispute’ condemned
Cape Town – The DA in the Northern Cape has been shocked by the brutal murder of Leon Brits, the owner of the well-known Pofadder hotel, on Wednesday after an alleged labour dispute, while the Freedom Front Plus has asked the community to remain calm.
’’We cannot continue to live in a society where people are tortured to death on a daily basis and nothing is done about it,’’ Veronica van Dyk MP, the DA constituency head of Kamiesberg, said in a statement.
Police spokesperson Brigadier Mohale Ramatseba said a case of murder and robbery has been opened after the 40-year-old Brits’s body was discovered by his wife Suretha, 30, at their undercover swimming pool at 11.45am today.
According to reports, his wife went looking for him after she couldn't reach him telephonically. He had spent the night in Pofadder with his brother Tokkie, who had left early on Wednesday morning for his house in Strandfontein.
Riaan Oberholzer, a family friend, was quoted on social media as saying: ’’′It looks as if he was stabbed with a knife multiple times and strangled with the dog's chain. It also looks as if he was dragged and thrown into the pool.’’
The Brits couple live in Kakamas, about 140km from Pofadder, through the week where their three children go to school.
The Freedom Front Plus said in a statement: ’’According to early reports, the incident relates to a labour dispute. The community has been asked to remain calm until it becomes clear what exactly transpired.
’’South Africa currently finds itself in a very volatile situation as the temperature is on the rise due to various cruel murders.’'
Van Dyk said: ’’Just like communities across the province and the country, the DA is fed up with escalating levels of violent crime in South Africa and especially the increasingly vicious attacks on people residing in our rural areas.
’’The levels of crime that we are witnessing are simply unthinkable and inhumane. We cannot continue to live in a society where people are tortured to death on a daily basis and nothing is done about it.
’’President Cyril Ramaphosa, government leaders and the police must come to the table now. They cannot allow this to continue.
’’They need to act or otherwise be seen as being complicit in the ongoing massacre of people residing in outlying areas.
’’We need drastically improved policing to stop the murders. We need more police officers, more resources and more upskilling of our police service. We need this today, not tomorrow or the next day because by then, more lives will have been unnecessarily lost.
’’We also need more perpetrators arrested and convicted as a matter of urgency, because otherwise the cycle of crime and the fear will simply continue unabated.
The killings must end today. People in rural areas also have the right to life and the right to safety and those who have fallen prey to ruthless criminals deserve justice too.’’