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Sense of lawlessness permeates every sphere of life in SA

There’s chaos on roads, corrupt politicians, extortion, bribery and persecution of foreigners, while police do nothing

In the two weeks I’ve just spent in Johannesburg, one phenomenon troubles me even more than the horrific joblessness, the inequality and poverty, the load-shedding and the xenophobic attacks: more and more motorists are tearing through red traffic lights without stopping.

On Thursday I drove from Hyde Park to Alexandra township and back. Nineteen cars drove through red lights. I kid you not. Nineteen. Driving through those streets was like playing Russian roulette — again and again. I was drenched with sweat at every intersection. It wasn’t just the usual suspects (minibus taxi drivers) ignoring the red lights. It was ordinary drivers. What’s going on?..

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