The National Council of SPCAs (NSPCA) has a formidable task. They need to ensure the nationwide protection of all animal species from abuse, neglect, and cruelty. One of the most effective ways to do this, is through the courts. Sadly, in the fight for justice, the plight of animals is often ignored or found at the bottom of the agenda.
A BackaBuddy campaign, launched by the NSPCA, aims to raise funds for Advocate Gerrie Nel to represent the National Council of SPCAs in a high-profile case in respect of inhumane treatment which led to the suffering of defenseless, voiceless animals.
The Case: The NSPCA v Thandi Modise
The National Council of SPCAs’ case involves allegations of the gross neglect of animals on Modderfontein farm belonging to Thandi Modise, Former Premier of the North West, ex-President of the ANC Woman’s League, former Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces, and currently Speaker of the National Assembly of South Africa.
On being alerted to the situation on the farm, officials of the National Council of SPCAs found a gruesome scene. Unfed animals were left to starve to death after workers had allegedly abandoned the farm. The workers left because they didn’t receive their wages.
Officials were shocked by the sight of about live pigs cannibalizing on dead and newborn pigs to survive. Without the provision of water, the pigs had also been forced to drink their own urine.
Sheep, geese, goats and ducks were also among the neglected animals found on the farm. By the time the officials arrived, 50 animals had already died. This was as a result of the lack of food and water. 162 animals were in such a terrible condition that they had to be humanely euthanised to prevent further suffering.
Some words from Marcelle Meredith, Executive Director of the NSPCA
“The NSPCA, having been approached by Advocate Gerrie Nel, is indebted to the legal team, without whom justice would not even be a possibility due to the enormous investigative process and the invaluable legal experience of the legal team. As said by Mahatma Gandhi: ‘The greatness of a nation can be judged by the way its animals are treated’”
The Reason for Crowdfunding on BackaBuddy
The State declined to prosecute. This was 2 years after a criminal case of animal cruelty was opened for contravening the Animals Protection Act. An application was then successfully made to the Director of Public Prosecution to privately prosecute, allowing for a private prosecution which will be undertaken on a pro amico basis by Advocate Gerrie Nel.
A case of this magnitude is estimated to take a minimum of 30 days and can be extremely expensive. The campaign launched on donations based crowdfunding platform, BackaBuddy aims to raise funds to cover the National Council of SPCAs legal fees for the “Animal Farm” case to successfully prosecute, raise awareness, and to make the point to future perpetrators that no one is above the law, irrespective of political power, money, and/or fame. A successful prosecution will also help develop case law.
Donate to Support the NSPCA
Donate to the ‘Animal Farm’ campaign on BackaBuddy to help cover the legal fees of Non-profit Organisation, the National Council of SPCAs, in its case against Thandi Modise.
The campaign has thus far raised R11 364.53 towards the fundraising target of R200 000 with contributions from 18 donors. You can make your donation HERE.
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