Welcome to my kasi, Marobjane. Those who love it call it Marock City. But outsiders calls it a city of crime or a city in the bush. When you look at it, it is a very good village but it is rotten like rubbish in a dustbin. No one is safe in this village most especially the visitors who are not welcomed at all. When you visit this place, you need to stay close to someone who is well known or you are dead.

The village is separated into two sections, new stands and old stands. Old stands is little more safer than the new stands, but you still need to watch out for unexpected events. There are groups of gangsters from both two sections. They rape, rob and kill with illegal guns. That is why outsiders call it a city of crime. If you are a coward like me, you need to make sure the shoe laces are always tightened and be prepared to run when you get attacked.

You see we live like the birds. We are not safe in our own village. Elders who get pension money are at high risk. Gangster break into their homes and demand the pension money and if they don’t get it, they get chopped and killed by axes, brutally like animals. Police will come for the sake of formality but no one is going to get arrested.

More of these gangsters are young boys who smoke weed and cigarettes. They gave up on life. Wherever they go, they carry weapons. When you go out for drinks at the nightclubs at night, you must be extra careful. That’s where these gangsters are active like owls. If you step on or touch him by mistake hell is gonna break loose, you will be beaten with empty bottles. If you are lucky enough you might wake up at hospital the next day, or else you could die. That’s the routine for every weekend at my hood.

These gangs they want power and fame by doing bad things. Dating local girls is another part that led me into danger. I’m always clean, smart and handsome. I don’t smoke weed unlike them. So wherever they see me, they see me as a threat. One day I dated a girl who’s brothers are part of the gangs. I used to see her at night and I would keep looking around just to check that her brothers wouldn’t catch us.

Unexpectedly one night they found us, fortunately they were quite far away from me. I got chased – as if I were the thug ¬– but mercifully they could not catch me. When I got home I realised that my left shoe had got torn apart when I was running. That night I didn’t sleep a peaceful sleep because I was wondering what would have happened if they have managed to catch me. Maybe I would have been a corpse as we speak.

I was staying at Old Stands and the girl was from the New Stands. So I become an enemy at New Stands. So for me day and night has become one thing – because I was no longer safe. Wherever I go I should keep my head up and look out for danger as though I were a prey in the bush. So now I’m restricted from places like nightclubs because if they find me there, I will have signed my death warrant. I feel like I could move away from this place but my family is here. Now I have to live like an animal because I am hunted.