- The recent spotlight on Sowetans who refuse to pay their Eskom bills has illuminated how crime is an everyday norm in South Africa
- Parliament is littered with officials that have been implicated in serious wrongdoings at the various commissions
- Is it an indication of how bad crime in the Rainbow Nation is? Briefly.co.za explores the notion.
In recent interviews with the Sowetan, residents were asked why they refuse to pay for their electricity, and the responses illustrated the current attitude in the country towards crime.
One man, in response to being asked if he knew the phenomenon of illicit electricity connections is a crime, had simply responded that 'everything is illegal in South Africa'.
He justified Soweto's situation by citing how unemployed gogos rely on social grants to feed grandchildren. According to the anonymous respondent, the electricity they bought seldom made it until the end of the month, so what else was to be expected?
Briefly.co.za reported earlier that residents who could afford to pay made it clear that they perceived it as a basic human right that they are entitled to, adamant that they would not pay.
According to The South African, this culture of 'non-payment' in South African townships could be traced back to Apartheid, during which struggle groups had encouraged people not to pay for government services. This has persisted, a quarter of a century later.
Lawlessness in the country is not limited solely to the residents of Soweto; it can be seen on our roads, it can be seen at the numerous inquiries.
It can be seen in the SAPS, with corrupt police officials being caught red-handed accepting bribes and beating citizens. It can be seen in the National Prosecuting Authority, with reports of corruption hindering the course of justice.
The current mindset in South Africa seems to be: We believe it is our right to cut corners, as long as we don't get caught.
Cabinet ministers have been implicated in all kinds of illegal behavior, and with the rot setting in among the top rungs of our society, what reason do those below have to follow the rules?
When you hear tell of how government officials and glorified gangsters like Gavin Watson and the Guptas merrily rub shoulders, who do we have to look up to?
President Cyril Ramaphosa has failed to act against certain ministers, some of whom have been found incompetent in court. One can only deduce that he is more afraid of the ANC than he is of South Africans.
The result of this is a clear message to his people: If you are powerful enough, rich enough and influential enough, there really isn't much you can't get away with.
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