Crime paranoia and the need for more police patrols
Sometime ago I was walking to the bus stop near my place and as I walked past the quiet suburb, I increased my pace just in case some thief was lurking nearby. Then suddenly some man emerged from behind me. I have no idea where he came from because just a few seconds before, I had looked back and had not seen anyone. I went into panic mode. I imagined he would come up behind me, and demand all my valuables. If I resisted, he might punch me in the face or stab me. I have it in me to beat the living daylights out of anyone who messes with me but I know I would struggle against a man, especially an angry criminal. Magodu a malatsi aa ba finder, e ka re ba bolawa ke go tsuba dikata. At their worst, they can kill someone for a mere phone. I was in flight or fight mode and knowing what these chaps are capable of, I figured it was best to run. I huffed, puffed and panted, trying to negotiate with my jiggly girth and thunder thighs to stop weighing me down and help save the day. The man increased his pace. I hurried towards traffic. I figured that I would run between the cars, arms flared in the air and screaming my head off to cause commotion. I got to the bus stop and luckily there were a few people there so I sat down trying to catch my breath. The man strolled over and sat next to me. It was then that I recognised him from my neighbourhood. He said to me: O sia o tshaba eng ne mma?” I responded: “Ke ne ke tshaba se o se tshabang!” I explained that I thought he wanted to mug me. He rolled over in laughed. Nowadays crime makes us paranoid, particularly us women, because we are more vulnerable. A few days ago, some people came to my house and claimed to be from a government department, gathering information for a survey. I refused to open the gate. I spoke to them from the window. The guy appeared irritated and thought I was being rude but I have reservations about opening up for strangers. Kana go tsenelelwa ke legodu ga go tshwane le go le bulela. Anyone can be a victim of crime but it is better to be safe than sorry. We often hear or read stories of people being mugged, robbed, hijacked, tricked and raped to the extent that trust is now a luxury and it helps to be vigilant. I lived in Gauteng for several years and got used to a life where you are always guarded and suspicious but it seems Gabs has turned into a “mini Jozi”.Government has re-introduced police and soldier patrols in areas considered to be crime hotspots such as Mogoditshane. This initiative will not eliminate crime but it brings a sense of protection to residents. This initiative should be rolled out to different areas of Gabs, especially in the inner city where some smart young men, are causing havoc to innocent residents. Some people would argue that crime increases as the economy grows but in Botswana, it is largely because of laziness and infiltration of materialism. In our communities, we have cohorts of people who break into houses, steal money, phones etc because they fulfil a temporary material need; it is easier for them to forcibly take other people’s stuff than earn their keep. Ba batla pellet gun; o mo hule mae gore ka moso a rekise kool time a baketse bogodu!