Make 2011 the last year of the bloody First Fruits Festival ritual of tearing a bull to pieces!

  • by: South African Council for Humanity
  • recipient: National Heritage Council of South Africa, South Africa Deputy Director of Animal Production - National Department of Agriculture, South Africa Department of Land Affairs

Every year on the first Saturday in December, at the First Fruits Festival in Kwazulu-Natal, South Africa, young warriors, some teenage boys as young as 14 years old, are tasked to kill a bull with their bare hands to prove their courage.

According to reports, approximately 40 young men push sand or mud down the bull's throat, gouge out his eyes, and twist his genitals before kicking and beating the animal to death and tearing his flesh apart with their hands. Traditional rules reportedly dictate that no tools, not even a knife, be used during this event.

Sign this petition to urge the South African government to ban this barbaric ritual.

We the undersigned are writing to express our horror and dismay at the barbaric practice of slaughtering a bull by hand at the annual First Fruits Festival which takes place in KwaZula-Natal in December.

The cruelty involved in killing an animal by hand is barbaric, completely unacceptable and illegal under the South African Animal Protection Act.

The current stance from the National Department of Agriculture is that cultural ceremonies such as this one are protected in terms of the Constitution and it is therefore “unwise and unconstitutional” to intervene in such events.

By turning a blind eye to this barbaric act the South African government is willingly accepting this cruelty, defying your own animal protection laws and undermining the work of animal-welfare organisations across the globe working to reduce the suffering to animals during slaughter.

Mahatma Gandhi said, "The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated"

We appeal to you to ban this ritual and uphold the South Africa’s laws protecting animals.

THe Undersigned
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