This article was sourced from the Solidarity Blog. I have taken the liberty of doing a rough translation from Afrikaans to English. The original Afrikaans article published by Ilze Nieuwoudt can be viewed here.
When the phone rings at 04:00
This is never a good sign, but this is what happened this morning.
My husband is employed as a farm manager at an agricultural school. More than 40 employees and their families live on these grounds. When the phone rang at 04:00 and our neighbour reported with panic in his voice that, “Wayne has been attacked in his home,” we knew there was trouble. Wayne is another neighbour who lives a few 100 meters from our farm. The phone rings again. “They are armed and they have escaped,” we are told. My heart pounds in my throat and I start praying for the time to pass and for the sun to rise.
The sun emerged and we thankfully survived the night. Today the story is all over the farm. We learned that two thugs, both armed with rifles, broke into Wayne’s house. The one thug sneaked into the bedroom and when Wayne opened his eyes the thug pressed the barrel against his head and said, “Do you want to die?” The thug pulled the trigger but the shot didn’t go off. A struggle ensued and the second armed thug then stormed into the room and pulled the trigger. Again, the rifle failed to fire. During the struggle Wayne was bitten and assaulted, but is was his screams and fight for survival that caused the thugs to flee the scene.
This is not the fist time our small community has been effected by crime. Hardly five months ago somebody in our neighbourhood was also attacked. There have been countless other housebreakings and theft --- where we have also been the victims.
Today we purchased a firearm, which we will only be able to collect once the licensing prosedures have been finalised, --- which may take months! I have always been anti-firearm. Maybe I have an unrealistic fear, but today I realised that we in South Africa have no other options. We cannot sleep peacefully anymore. What upsets me most about the whole affair is the way the thug played with someone’s life. Do you want to die?” Who has the right to ask such a question? He does not ask, “Where is your money?” or “Where is your car keys?” No, in South Africa this is not the issue anymore! Our thieves do not break in because they desperately need a TV. They break in solely for the purpose of hurting or killing you. They are arrogant because they know that they will never be caught.
It is getting late again and it will be dark soon. Another night of prayer awaits us as we call upon the dark hours to pass so that the sun can rise again.