On Tuesday, President of South Africa Cyril Ramaphosa was set to deliver a keynote speech at an event marking the establishment of the National Ports Authority. After being invited to the podium, Ramaphosa realized that his iPad from which he usually reads his speeches was no longer with him.
“Somebody decided to dispossess me of my iPad, so I want that. Can I have my iPad, please? So they stole it, I had my iPad, this is the problem of always handing your gadgets out to other people, It is best that I should keep all these things with me.” Ramaphosa said.
The president remained completely silent as he tried to recall where he had put his Apple gadget. After that, Ramaphosa returned to his seat. The iPad was eventually found, but his office denied that it had been stolen. The official Twitter handle of the President of South Africa later posted “Thank you, South Africa. There was no question of the iPad being missing or stolen. The President was making a light-hearted point while waiting for the iPad to be brought to him – which it was before he began his remarks to media.”
News about crimes in South Africa abound. Vuyo Mvoko, a South African television journalist, was mugged in the middle of the night in Johannesburg in March 2015. Vuyo, a contributing editor for the South African Broadcasting Corporation (SABC), was reporting on phones and laptops in full view of the rolling cameras, as seen on a now-viral Zambian President Edgar Lungu’s arrival at Milpark Hospital. Two guys approached Vuyo, who was seconds away from going on live, and proceeded to rob him and the news team of their video. The two men were later sentenced to 15 years in prison by the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court after they pleaded guilty to robbery with aggravated circumstances.
South Africa’s crime rates are alarming. Theft of personal property has continuously been the most prevalent crime faced by citizens in South Africa, according to Statistics South Africa (Stats SA). In 2019/20, an estimated 1,1 million incidents of personal property theft occurred, impacting 902 000 people aged 16 and up. South Africa has also been ranked as the third most dangerous country in the world, according to Numbeo’s 2021 crime index – with six local cities among the 20 most dangerous globally.