Comfort and Elias, William Nicol & Sandton Drive

28 Nov

Comfort

26 year old Comfort Marambeyika and Elias Nhidza are cousins. Originally from Zimbabwe, they travelled to South Africa together. They live in the Joburg CBD but beg in Sandton. 

Comfort is disabled and clearly needs the help of Elias, who was smartly dressed and seemed to take the job of wheeling her up and down the busy intersection quite seriously. Despite her disability, Comfort was remarkably cheerful. She told me they make between R100 and R150 a day.

Money in can

Just up William Nicol was a big police roadblock, and several police vehicles drove past to turn right as I was standing there interviewing them. I felt uneasy and wondered whether either of them were in the country illegally, and whether the cops would take an interest in what Lourie and I were up to. It’s rather sad that when I see the police now, I don’t feel reassured; instead, I feel nervous. There’ve been too many stories of law-abiding citizens being bullied or worse for me to feel comfortable around them.

Me interviewing them

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