Soweto, Johannesburg – In recent months, South Africa has been hit with frequent power cuts due to the country’s power crisis, throwing the country into chaos. On Monday, residents in the community of White City in Soweto experienced the devastating consequences of load shedding when two young boys aged five and six were kidnapped and murdered. The bodies of the children were found in different locations after they were reported missing the day before.
Speaking to Eyewitness News, members of the community policing forum said that criminals were making the most of South Africa’s power crisis by taking advantage of the darkness it creates. One resident stated that there were individuals carrying weapons such as knives and shovels, making it challenging to protect their own children. Even children had to be told not to play outside during load shedding hours as it’s not safe due to the lack of light.
Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi acknowledged that the power cuts had facilitated criminals’ habits and that their activity had risen due to the darkness brought forth by load shedding. He acknowledged the misery that this is causing in the communities. “If you can’t end load shedding, that’s the end of all of us,” Lesufi added.
The situation has also led to outrage among many community members, who perceive that they’ve been neglected by those in power. They’ve lost trust in the authorities whose slow response led to the painful loss of two young lives. When the bodies of the boys were found, residents took to the streets to express their anger and grief, uniting in their loss to march in the unlit streets of White City.
Many residents expressed their dissatisfaction, but Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi pleaded with them to allow the law enforcement agencies to do their work. However, many residents believe that quick action from the police could have saved the boys. Premier Lesufi acknowledged how challenging it is for the community to hold their peace in such situations. Still, swift and impulsive actions by the community members could push the law enforcement agencies into doing their work and further harm unsuspecting people. Instead, he urged those in the community to remain calm and allow the appropriate authorities to investigate and act.
In conclusion, the frequency of load shedding in South Africa has exposed the vulnerabilities that come with power cuts. It has become paramount for those in power to find a lasting solution to end load shedding as it causes distress in communities and makes them more susceptible to criminal activity. The experiences of the community of White City in Soweto are a stark reminder that no one should have to live in fear of their life, because the country’s power crisis demands that they should.