ISSUES AFRICA WORLD PHILOSOPHY AFRIKAANS LEISURE GENERAL

Shocking views of Rapport editor

Tim du Plessis is living on a different planet

Nicholas G Myburgh
5 September 2003 E-Mail this page to a friend


The Farmer's Weekly published Rapport editor Tim du Plessis' recent speech to farmers during the Agri-Western Cape congress. Nic Myburgh, a prominent Southern Cape farmer, takes issue with his views.
Du Plessis must stop blaming Zimbabwean farmers for the woefull mess
Dear Sir

I refer to the article "Feel at home in South Africa" in the FM of 29 August, 2003, conveying the views of Tim du Plessis as expressed to farmers at the recent Agri-Western Cape congress.

I find it astonishing how the editor of a Sunday newspaper can scrape together the gall to disseminate such undiluted drivel to any audience in South Africa, let alone farmers! Mr Du Plessis is guilty of precisely that which he accuses Mugabe of, namely being "unable to make his emotions subservient to sound reasoning". As editor of Rapport Mr Du Plessis has a long record of trying to be all things to all people, especially the current government. Now he is going one step further by importing his wholly skewed and prejudiced assumptions onto the pages of a more credible publication such as The Farmer's Weekly, which will not do the latter's reputation any good, I'm afraid.

The farmers who stayed were the patriots... Du Plessis attempts to brand them as isolationist racists
Mr Du Plessis must stop blaming Zimbabwean farmers for the woefull mess into which the Mugabe regime has thrown them. International observers are unanimous in their view that Zim farmers are the victims and not the cause of what has transpired in that country over the past 18-24 months. It is only Mr Du plessis, the SA government and Kortbroek van Schalkwyk who somehow have managed to turn the victims into perpetrators of mayhem, murder, and the destruction of basic human rights. It is utterly disgracefull and callous the way in which Du Plessis rides roughshod over the facts in Zimbabwe (and SA, for that matter) in trying to sell an analysis which has no foundation or relation to the truth.

The truth is that the Zim farmers who were murdered, dispossessed, assualted and robbed of their livelihood are the very same ones who accepted the new dispensation in that country. They are the ones who opted to stay, to make things work, to co-operate and to contribute to a country that needs all the help it can get. They stayed and toiled, and despite great uncertainty at the time placed their faith in the new Zimbabwe. They could have left, like so many did. Those who were not willing to share the future sought one elsewhere. The farmers who stayed were the patriots, the builders of a new future for Zimbabwe, who were willing and ready to co-operate with the new ruling elite. Instead, Du Plessis attempts to brand them as isolationist racists who got what they deserved!

Du Plessis even implores us not to rely on our Constitution and the Constitutional Court
In similar vein Du Plessis prematurely places the blame on SA farmers should things go wrong for them. He even implores us not to rely on our Constitution and the Constitutional Court for the protection of our basic individual rights. Instead, he suggests we all cosy up to the government as the best guarantee for our survival. I'm clearly hugely mistaken, but I always thought SA (and Zimbabwe) are democracies where the quality or affirmation of one's rights are not dependent on one's political allegiances, that our constitutional rights are governed by law and not by political zealots, and where life-style choices are fundamental to the democratic ethos. I now understand why Du Plessis takes the line he normally does in his columns - he thinks he is protecting his job! Well, what a sad indictment that is of the new South Africa. What an utterly hopeless scenario is it not that Du Plessis presents to the world!

South African farmers (like their counterparts in Zim) have no power and are not a threat in any shape or form to the government of the day. We are not particularly out-going nor reclusive. We simply expect to be able to ply our trade like anybody else, without favour or prejudice. We make a significant contribution to the economy, to rural socio-economic conditions, and are the last people who would want to see this country fail. In return all we expect is respect and recognition of our democratic rights as contained in our Constitution. If that is not good enough for Mr Du Plessis then we are clearly not living on the same planet.

Sincerely,
NICHOLAS G MYBURGH


Previous Visitor Comments

Name Email Subject Location
Jun2j40bexblbh_at_mail.comnLTjoXxwTjIGjyd
it or not, and went on several irnpising educational trips to all parts of Africa Botswana, East Africa with Singita Game Reserves, Victoria Falls, the Quirimbas in Mozambique, and shark cage diving on

Akash9iabcnrb_at_hotmail.comfxGpnaWAyuAxQgTw
Hi pip,i love your photos.i raced the SJS this wekeend in Gunnedah. i came 3rd in the swim . 5th on the bike and had a really bad run! i am racing again next wekeend.i miss you guys hi uncle justin. good luck in your next race!i also loved your youtube video.lots of love baixxx

Ladiilovepiciottu_at_hotmail.fryXvubgwHlGsUDiZKY
A few years ago I’d have to pay soemone for this information.

Steve Loockmr.steve.loock_at_gmail.comoor tim
Tim du Plessis praat (altyd) stront ...

Jan Maritzimpromptu_at_telkomsa.netRapport en Boere
Tim du Plessis is deur niemand verkies nie, en is aan niemand behalwe sy Base enige verantwoordelik nie. Hy is veral aan die Waarheid omtrent die toestande in landbou geen bloue duit verskuldig nie. Wie is sy base en in wie se belang tree hy op? Hy word kennelik gedryf deur 'n selfverterende veragting vir alles wat ons eie is, en 'n kunsmatige, maar selfonterende bewondering vir alles wat ons vernietiging soek. M.i. behoort hy onmiddellik te bedank en sy base te smeek om 'n swart baas vir Rapport aan te stel. Hy moet sonder werk, heenkome en vooruitsig saam met die 90 ander armblankes in 'n Pretoriase agterplaas gaan woon, en na so 'n jaar of twee praat ons weer. DIT sal sy eie skuld wees, en niemand anders s'n nie. Groete, Jan Maritz

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