Wednesday, 17 September 2008

'Tell Nqakula I won't go'

16/09/2008 22:53 - (SA)

Virginia Keppler, Beeld

Pretoria - "Tell the minister of safety and security that I'm not going to Australia, because South Africa is my home."

That's what a citrus farmer from Cullinan, east of Pretoria, said after being shot three times in a robbery that took place at his house on Monday night at 22:30.

John de Jager, 37, was shot three times in his right leg when he came to the aid of his wife, Petronella, also 37, after armed robbers attacked her at their washing line.

She had gone out to bring in the washing when she suddenly started screaming. He immediately rushed outside, De Jager said from his bed in Montana hospital on Tuesday.

Shot without warning

"I saw a man standing close to her. He didn't say anything and shot me without warning. When the first bullet struck me, I rushed at him. He then fired two more shots, hitting me in the same leg."

The robbers left him lying there and took his wife into the house.

"They took her to our bedroom to open the safe for them and then stole two firearms and money from the safe."

The robbers also took the couple's cellphones and Petronella's wedding rings and jewellery. They then tied her hands behind her back with her husband's shoelaces.

"They also tied my hands and feet with my shoelaces and then sat on me. When I told them I needed medical attention, they swore at me.

"Before they fled, they pulled a blanket over my head."

His wife managed to free herself and also cut him loose.

Son sleeps through drama

"I couldn't move and just lay there."

Fortunately their son, Günter, seven, slept through the drama.

More than a week ago De Jager caught two cable thieves on his property and handed them over to the police. He believes the attack could be related to that.

Minister of Safety and Security, Charles Nqakula, said in 2006 that people who threaten to leave the country because of the high crime rate should stop complaining or leave.

De Jager said he wasn't going to leave the country. "The minister should rather be sacked.

"Tell him (the minister) I'm not a grumbler and I'll never leave the country, because where shall I go? I just want them to bring back the death penalty.

"My firearms are now out there and will be used in other armed robberies."


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