Stellenbosch and the surrounding farming communities are reeling after the murder of prominent strawberry farmer Jeffrey Zetler. Picture: Supplied.

CAPE TOWN - The African National Congress (ANC) in the Western Cape has slammed the murder of prominent Stellenbosch farmer Jeffrey Zetler who was killed over the weekend.

In a statement on Wednesday morning, ANC provincial secretary Faiez Jacobs said the party views farming murders in "a very serious light and agrees with Agri Western Cape that this is one murder too many".

The party sent its condolences to the Zetler family, colleagues at Agri Western Cape and the farming community of Stellenbosch.

"The ANC is extremely troubled by the statisticians report early this year which says 'households in the Western Cape are more likely to be victims of crime than in any other province'," the statement added. "The report continued that 'Throughout the four-year period, the Western Cape has maintained the top position, having the highest proportion of households victimised by crime'.

"What makes it even more difficult for farming households is their isolation and remoteness, rendering them an easy target for criminals." 

Jacobs said the ANC commended the work of the Stellenbosch Community Policing Forum in ensuring that there is a community layer of protection provided by the farming communities themselves. 

"This explains why, as sad as this incident is, it is the first farm murder in the area this year, which speaks to their attempts to protect the community.

"We call on our police department to provide more resources and police on the ground, specifically to target the protection of households, including a greater police visibility and patrol in remote farms all over the province," Jacobs said.

"These criminals must not have the last word."

Zetler, 62, was stabbed to death in a robbery at the Mooiberge strawberry farm, on the corner of the R44 and Annandale Road on Saturday. 

African News Agency (ANA)