Delaying, or Ignoring the process of justice for victims holds us back from progress as a country
As the year’s tick by, there is no doubt that I have started to get a handle on the gifts that I have and the rollout path we are on for world peace, health and niche police force or services technology support.
Whilst South Africa needs full recognition for our collaboration achievements, and I am very proud of where our country is going, and all leadership on different levels, we have generations ahead of us to work things out. If we achieve our crime reduction plan, I will be 66 when our country reaches international policing norms. I am currently 45. It makes building our platform unique as we are building to shape a nation and take these learnings to the world.
Cases like that of the Culpable Homicide of JJ van de Velde hold us back from progress because no matter how much blue blood flows in my South African veins, it is a crushing blow when we cannot move forward to trial for justice.
When you see an accused and his passenger not six minutes before on camera staggering and weaving to their vehicle, other patrons pausing to look at the strangely behaving duo, — who then urinate on their vehicle in the open area car park before proceeding to drive – It is heartbreaking! What is far more crystalising is the crime scene investigation where all the other evidence gathered speaks to the facts of culpable homicide and reckless and negligent driving, resulting in these truths for the family and community of what unfolded before JJ’s eyes as he slipped into death before his time.
Ironically despite all this evidence, the family seek justice only in the form of acceptance of responsibility by the accused and for the law to take its course.
You know that my only answer when talking about South Africa is that it has a beauty like no other. However, the more significant challenge is the running of blood across the lenses of our eyes, hearts, and souls. I cannot understand or even begin to fathom how we can have a COVID-19 response plan rolled out on such great magnitude, yet we cannot do the same for the 24 000 murder victims per year.
I think South Africa should be on lockdown for murder, rape, and other violent crimes, including an alcohol ban in high-risk areas, and a total sweep of the nation for murder weapons, carried out by the nation collectively in respect to one another and all lives lost.
Today marks one year from the day that Brenden Horner (21) was murdered, a murder that triggered something that I can only describe as coming unnervingly close to our nation breaking out in a civil war on criminals and those that incite violence, hate, rage and corruption, because of the ongoing slaughter in the farming sector and that of their 24 000+ fellow South Africans.
It was human leadership with their personal faiths that averted this, and I can tell you I fell to my knees at each passing hour knowing that immediate restraint and healing were taking place. Imagine a country with no food if every farmer, staff and service provider downed tools and investment, coupled with another Marikana type event.
The Marikana massacre, the killing of 34 miners by the South African Police Service, took place on Thursday 16th August 2012 and was the most lethal use of force by South African security forces against civilians since 1976. The massacre has been compared to the 1960 Sharpeville massacre. Imagine adding a fourth similar point to our history of farmers.
These are not simply sensitive topics; they are indescribable pains that are gaping wounds in different sectors of society but in no way are isolated. You see, the story of the polarisation in South Africa is not nearly on the scale as we would like to believe. In fact, what the world does not see or hear about is the fact that citizens are united more than what we actually realise, especially when pushed too far. We saw how the taxi industry played one of the most significant roles in restoring peace and stability in the nation in the recent rioting and civil unrest that resulted in food, fuel, and medical supply shortages in Kwazulu Natal and parts of Gauteng.
Moreover, this transport sector joined farm, neighbourhood and township watch associations to help feed, cloth, perform security patrols and pull together information that protected the nation. It was, in fact, peacemaking on another level; it was South Africans joining hands, hearts and souls.
We saw something extraordinary during this period. We saw unity at a grassroots level, a president that stood before the world and took responsibility. We all know in leadership if you can’t own it, you never will.
I think there should be a DNA project like never seen before to catch up to international norms.
Any person on any level of leadership that is in the know and believes in the country’s greater good would likely support this. It would improve and enable further investment into the country, and slowly self-correct the terrible culture of crime and violence. Yet, we cannot get to court for culpable homicide matters when all the evidence is clear and available for prosecution.
You know the greatest pain here is that JJ believed in justice so much that he taught this to his children, and held this value in the highest order. He demonstrated kindness, compassion, and investment in every person around him by his words and actions in every second of his life. Yet all of this feels empty when we as friends, family, a nation, the NPA and police cannot speak for JJ. Samantha, JP, Emma, and Grace are waiting hour by hour to fly back from Australia at a moment’s notice to attend trial and justice.
Thank you to the Australian Government for your role in supporting JJ’s family. It has not gone unnoticed to the world.
Take time to read and see the visual impacts, the family photo album, and JJ’s SVS (Specialised Victim Support) Timeline.
To the NPA, the Police Ministry to the Provincial Commissioner, with head, eyes, heart and soul lowered in the deepest purest respect, help this family and our nation!
In love, light, dreams and tunnel-vision passion!
Brian Jones (SA7)
Brian’s Passionate Desk
082 884 8024
Together SA CAN (NPO)
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