On the day when Florence Masebe was shot, she took the opportunity to reflect forty times.
On the other hand, it has been 23 years since the actress miraculously escaped a gunshot that came dangerously close to taking her life.
After her attacker shot six to eight rounds at her car inside her Bramley Park house in Sandton on August 18, Florence had to have three procedures to remove bullets and patch wounds. The incident occurred on August 18.
The fact that her daughter, who was only four years old at the time, saw her mother lying in a pool of blood made the situation much more terrifying.
As Florence marks the passage of 23 years after the traumatic event, she expresses her gratitude to God for preserving her life.
She penned the following: “She irritated nobody.” After shooting her, they vanished into thin air after the crime. They were so certain. They were unaware that they were in the presence of a rare lioness. This young woman managed to live despite having many gunshots poured into her body. She did not die! I live!
Even after 23 years have passed, I still have the strangest impulse to acknowledge the win whenever this anniversary comes around… I did not die on August 18, 1999. “Hello, my name is Florence Masebe, and I have not left.”
GUN VIOLENCE IN SOUTH AFRICA
When I went to Soweto some time after the massacre that had taken place there, the residents were obviously still in shock. However, there is a lack of confidence that the authorities will take any action.
“I have lived here for a good number of years, and even when we call the police, they do not arrive. They warn that you should stay away from this region because of how hazardous it is. When there are people really living here, I don’t see how they can possibly declare that it’s a restricted area “a resident stated.
Since then, several weeks have passed, and there has been no arrest made in connection with the incident.
But the issue of gun violence is not a recent one in South Africa, nor is it one that is confined to Soweto exclusively.
According to the estimates of many experts, a shooting results in the death of roughly one person per hour in South Africa.
Furthermore, the lived experience of some individuals on the ground lends credence to the widespread nature of gun violence.
“There are gunshots every single night. Taking pictures each and every day “explained one Soweto resident, who wished to remain nameless in order to preserve their privacy.
One other victim passed away later in the hospital after being shot during the attack that took place earlier this month in a crowded pub in this enormous slum located just outside of Johannesburg.
Just before the stroke of midnight, a band of heavily armed men smashed their way inside, fired fire, and then vanished into the darkness.
This event, along with other recent shootings that took place in taverns, has brought to light how dangerous the nation may be at times.
In Cape Town, where certain neighborhoods have been beset by gun and gang violence, I had the opportunity to speak with a heartbroken mother named Lesley Wyngaard.
“They stole a bit of my heart away with them. As she spoke about life after the passing of her son seven years ago, she became overcome with emotion as she said, “It’s never going to be the same again, they took a piece of me.”
As a result of being in the wrong place at the wrong time, Rory, who was 25 years old at the time, received a gunshot wound to the back of his head following a night out with friends in the township of Mitchells Plain.
People consider Mitchells Plain to be a dangerous neighborhood because rival gangs frequently engage in gun battles over territory, and innocent bystanders are frequently caught in the crossfire.
Ms. Wyngaard reported that the violence is still present there seven years after Rory was killed there.
We arranged to meet at a tiny garden that was located on the grounds of a church, which was where his bones were buried.
“He is now free from harm and suffering. She stated this while she tended to a vase of fresh flowers that was placed next to her son’s ashes. “No one can ever hurt him again,” she murmured.
“Rory would tell his father that he didn’t feel secure in the neighborhood, and he’d add that they would need to hurry home and were always ducking bullets because of the gangs fighting in that area. Rory’s father would tell his son that he didn’t feel safe in the area. She stated that nothing had changed, and that not enough action was being taken.
Criminologists believe that the use of firearms has contributed to an increase in crime. It is said that 23 people are killed with weapons per day in South Africa, which is an increase from the 18 people who were slain with guns six years ago.
Criminologists believe that gun violence has increased in South Africa, where an average of 23 people are killed by firearms every single day. The question is, however, why gun violence is so widespread.
According to the knowledgeable Prof. Lufuno Sadiki, the country’s connections with violence run deep.
“We simply can’t ignore our country’s past,” she added, alluding to the manner in which the system of legalized racism was enforced before it was abolished over three decades ago. “We just can’t ignore our country’s past,” she said. “We just can’t ignore our country’s past.”
Because “the apartheid regime itself was highly violent and very vicious,” it was necessary for both communities and security personnel to be armed during that time period. She stated that the culture of arming was still prevalent.
“In the present day, South Africans have lost faith in the police, and as a direct result of this loss of trust as well as confidence, a significant number of people are now arming themselves.”
Numerous industry professionals are in agreement that illicit guns are a serious issue in this region.
Recent research conducted by the Global Initiative Against Transnational Organized Crime found that organized crime networks are used to smuggle firearms and ammunition into the country from the neighboring countries of Zimbabwe and Mozambique. Some of these firearms and ammunition are of a high calibre.
However, there have been reports of lost weaponry from the security personnel.
In the course of the previous year, several thefts committed at police stations all around the country resulted in the theft of hundreds of guns.
Some people believe that the authorities are unable to adequately monitor the legal firearms in circulation.
This kind of weapon was responsible for Rory Wyngaard’s death.
“During the course of the court proceedings, we were given the information that Rory’s death was caused by a police pistol. “I don’t know if it was misplaced or taken from them, but he was shot to death with a police gun,” Ms. Wyngaard added.
Image caption Ms. Wyngaard places new flowers in a vase next to the urn containing her son Rory’s ashes. Seven years ago, Rory was shot and murdered by a pistol that was either lost or stolen from a police officer.
The fact that the court action itself was dismissed due to an administrative error was yet another blow to the family.
The police are adamant that measures are being taken to address the firearms issue.
They claim that over the past decade they have located and destroyed 70 percent of the firearms that have gone missing. Once located, these guns are destroyed.
Adele Kirsten, who has been campaigning for decades for a gun-free South Africa, recently stated that in order for the nation to have any hope of reducing gun violence, a concentrated effort must be placed into lowering the number of weapons that are now in circulation.
She continued, “We have to mop up the illegal weapons, but once you’ve cleared the pool of illegal firearms, you must turn off the tap.” “We have to mop up the illegal weapons.”
Despite the fact that there have been fresh demands for South Africa’s gun regulations to be tightened more, including making it more difficult for citizens to receive licensed weapons for self-defence in the first place, pro-gun lobbyists argue that this is not the solution to the problem.
“There is no issue with citizens, private citizens, or law-abiding citizens owning guns. According to Damian Enslin, chairman of the South African Gunowners Association, “there is an issue with organized criminals getting their hands on such types of firearms.”
“We already have decent gun regulations, but even if we had the finest laws in the world, it wouldn’t matter if there wasn’t somebody to police them,” said one person.
The pace of finding answers to the issues caused by illicit weapons is too sluggish for the families who have had loved ones taken from them as a result of gun violence.
There is no hope for Ms. Wyngaard and her family since there will be no justice served, no resolution reached, and the family will continue to struggle with the grief of losing their kid.
As part of her recovery process, she now offers guidance to other parents in her community who have been through the same or similar experiences.
“Not only are things not getting better, but they are growing far worse.
“I always tell folks to feel what it is that they need to feel because something valuable and something God-given was taken from them,” she said. You were cheated out of your kid, which is the most excruciating type of suffering.