Raymond Buys was admitted to a hospital on 23 March 2011 for tests. His mother, Wilma, arrived at the hospital and what she saw horrified her. She stated,
“He was semi-conscious and convulsing, with his arm broken in two places. There were burns and wounds all over his body. Buys was severely malnourished and dehydrated, and a medical report predicted that his chances of recovery were virtually zero.”
Raymond had spent the nearly three months at the Echo Wild Games Rangers camp, touted as a training course, located in South Africa. The camp promises to make men out boys.
The camp is not without controversy. In 2007, two other young men, Eric Calitz and Nicolaas ver der Walt, 18 and 19 respectively, died at the camp.
Alex De Koker, listed as the camp's leader and another employee named Michael Erasmus, 49 and 20, respectively, are now on trial after being charged with child abuse, child neglect, assault and murder charge in connection with the death of Raymond Buys.
According to a story filed by Addicting Info, Wilma Buys spoke to a reporter from The Daily Telegraph, explaining that over the entire length of time her son was at the camp, she spoke to him only three times, and over a speaker phone. She spoke to De Koker on two occasions.
De Koker told Wilma Buys during one of those phone calls that her son was harming himself. She asked her son about it, and he told her,
“Mum, I’m not doing it to myself.”
Wilma stated the reason she sent her son to the camp as,
”I sent my son on this course to make him a better man, to give him a better future. I trusted Alex De Koker with his life.”
Some of the details that have been released regarding the case include Buys being forced to eat his own feces as well as cleaning powder, that he was chained to his bed, and frequently had his head covered with a pillow case.
The sister of one of the young men who died in 2007, Eric Calitz, said her brother made a request to leave the camp. An autopsy revealed that Calitz died of a combination of a seizure, dehydration and bleeding of the brain. His family received a text message that stated he died of a heart attack.
The sister said that the camp would make her brother a man. He was called 'gay.' De Koker received a suspension in connection with Calitz' death. He received nothing in connection with the death of the other young man, van der Walt.
De Koker was allegedly a member of a white supremacist group and the camp was known as a place to send young men to cure them of homosexuality by addressing feminine traits through physical assault.
H/T Addicting Info