Trump 'Leave us alone' Say's South Africa farmers

SOUTH AFRICAN farmers have hit back at Donald Trump after the US president waded in to the row over the country’s land seizures in a post on Twitter. One farmer warned Mr Trump to “leave our people the hell alone” after the US president addressed South Africa’s proposed land reforms in an outburst on Twitter last Wednesday.

Mr Trump tweeted: “I have asked Secretary of State @SecPompeo to closely study the South Africa land and farm seizures and expropriations and the large scale killing of farmers.

“South African Government is now seizing land from white farmers.”

But Cape Town farmer Preline Swart criticised Mr Trump’s intervention.
She said: "I think Donald Trump must really take his long hair... and leave our people the hell alone.”

Ms Swart added: "He's an outsider and he knows nothing about farming.”

And Andre Smith, a farmer from the Northern Cape province, described Mr Trump as “outspoken”.

He said: "I'm worried about the politicians and the politics in our country if they don't get (land reform) right.

"We don't love Donald Trump and his outspokenness.

“He doesn't understand the South Africa situation. We have to inform him, we have to invite him to visit us.”

South African officials have also responded to Mr Trump’s tweet.

In a statement the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) said: “President Trump's tweet serves only to polarise debate on this sensitive and crucial matter.”

In July, President Cyril Ramaphosa said his African National Congress (ANC) party would move to amend the country’s constitution to allow the expropriation of land without compensation.

White farmers are said to own the majority of private land in South Africa.

White people own 72 per cent of private land in the country, with black people owning just four per cent, according to South Africa’s government.

Critics say that expropriation plans could damage the country’s economy, after disastrous land reforms in Zimbabwe under Robert Mugabe.

Today, Theresa May revealed she plans to talk to Mr Ramaphosa to discuss the land reforms. The Prime Minister is currently in South Africa on a tour.

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