The strip of land running along the sides of the railway track which wends its way between Kempton Park and Tembisa (both it and the line go further in both directions) is the setting for this tale. Its depth varies from minimal to large distances interspersed with bush, trees and habitation. There is wildlife from birds, the usual rodents and some difficult interlopers. These include the 'mlala pipes', the 'tsotsies' and others who are by necessity forced to fend for themselves but are not necessarily law breakers (illegal's, asylum seekers and more). There is clear division of hierarchy among the groups as well as individuals within them and outside because there are always the loners, the non belongers.
The level of violence is high when it breaks out, otherwise it simmers needing only a spark or someone who is recognised as a leader of whichever sort be it physical, verbal, spiritual or any of a number of variants to bring on the action. But calm is soon restored when the need to survive and not draw attention resurfaces. These marginal's for the most part indulge in work, play and criminal actions when the occasion presents or the need arise and the officials of the Law (the Police, Community and Council employees as well as citizen rights/security groups) are largely aware of them and their activities, only dealing with them when the need arises. They will tell you they watch them closely and are always ahead of them. Only partially true at best. They are watching and waiting but pre-emptive action is sporadic and seldom produces any tangible results so the whole circular endless cycle just plods continuously on. Until something and someone disturbs the status quo.
Among these men (there are fewer women) there is the occasional outcast who has by their actions, words and deeds become somewhat of an icon or at least has gained a degree of respect allowing them a greater degree of freedom. What they use this freedom for is another matter. It is usually used for personal gain in whichever field but not always is this apparent as some play a long game where the end result will not be seen for a very long time. And they prepare the ground for themselves over and over so that they collect a group (small at first) of followers and adherents who find safety and material benefits coming their way even if only minimally. If you have nothing, then something, no matter how small, is an improvement and a gain. The numbers slowly swell until...?
It all depends where you are headed. Daniel is a very simple but clever man who has understood many of the requirements necessary to build up such a reputation and taken both the time and expended the effort needed. He has taken to dressing quite simply (like a religious and pious man) and going barefoot. His lifestyle is unorthodox but not flashy and the same as all the others. He gives away what he has keeping little for himself and gaining more followers in the process. He has been to prison for stealing the goods donated in the Charity Trolleys at Supermarkets especially the Pick n Pay in Road and has added to his persona and mystique by so doing. If he has other crimes attached to his name I do not know but the likelihood is good given his past conduct. And he preaches if it can be called that because religion does not enter into the oratory as per normal. His words are not about God and mankind, no they are very political and violent. They fit with his habit picked up by his followers of hanging meat and sausages stolen from Charity baskets in trees and trailing odd items in peculiar places. To what end you may ask? Well his adherents indulge in what is colloquially known as 'Garage Sales' which in effect means they break into people's garages on private property and steal all the contents for sale or use by themselves.
Included his 'Clothes Line Shopping' which is theft of washing hung in people's private gardens and Apartment Block washing line areas which is worn or sold. These items are transported openly under the noses of the Police and public by being hidden among the recycled garbage that is collected by the 'mlala pipes' and recycle collectors. They literally transport it openly on their trolleys day and night. Daniel takes this to a further stage and sometimes destroys these stolen items almost as an offering of sorts (to whom we are not sure given the superstitious belief systems these people employ). This further raises his public image and gives him yet more leeway. He refuses to acknowledge the Law or Legal system and will attend Court under duress if forced to but not speak as normal or accept the Court's right to judge him preferring to deny its accepted legality and producing no evidence of who he is (an Identity Document).He refutes all known structures as being put in place to benefit the 'whites' or the 'ANC' blacks who he is quite happy to rob and destroy.
To his followers, he tells them that they will live in the very houses they rob and that these houses, cars and other goods are rightfully theirs and have been stolen from them in the first place which is how their current owner's obtained them. So they are only repossessing that which is theirs. Which they dutifully and happily believe and accept as true. He is gaining a following of dangerous people for whom violence is an everyday normal occurrence and who will stop at very little to achieve their ends. To him and them, the areas of Glen Marais and in fact most of Kempton Park are happy hunting grounds where they are only taking what is rightfully theirs. And if someone gets in their way or they have the opportunity to abuse an innocent owner? They will revert to type and load all their frustrations and unexpressed anger onto them causing horrific injuries (mentally as well as physically)and in some cases death. He will not join the ANC (African National Congress), EFF Economic Freedom Fighters) or DA (Democratic Alliance)let alone any other party or group whether they are political or not preferring to build his own 'church' on his terms. His long term agenda can only be guessed at but this man has understood how to gain power and is set on doing so.
How do we know this? From information given to us by the public but not the public that you are thinking of. No, instead the Drug dealers, prostitutes, street people, addicts and alcoholics, the criminals and the marginalised members of society many of whom barely 'exist' in the eyes of the Law being illegal or not recognised. How do we know them? Through contacts and first hand dealings with them having fed them (handing out food donated from charities which we arranged so as to help segments of deprived and excluded people on the margins of society) and giving them free legal advice or just by mixing with them daily through living among them. They are here right now, living on your doorstep and actively plotting your downfall. Isn't it time to deal with this and stop it before it grows to a stage where a major problem exists and cannot be solved by normal means instead requiring acknowledgement of a 'political' agenda and thus becoming a different and very difficult thorn to remove. It is time for sanity to prevail and concrete plans of action to be drawn up and activated.
To boldly write what is never written.
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