In a way, one has to credit social media and the “selfie generation” for exposing the two thuggish bodyguards flashing an AK rifle and another weapon and making threats to kill people.
Social media is where we love to see ourselves preen and that appears to be what these two alleged professional protection officers did.
Playing Rambo and making the macho “We’ll get you” type of statements all bullies make, they couldn’t resist shooting a “selfie” and posting it on social media.
The problem is that social media’s other distinguishing characteristic is that messages, memes and videos spread virally. And, before you can say “wildfire”, this frightening piece of posturing went public.
It is frightening because it was made in KwaZulu-Natal by people linked to a politician and in an atmosphere of tension, where political assassinations have become almost a daily occurrence.
Many of those murders are carried out by people carrying AK-47s. Yet, as so often happens in SA, nothing happened. After the public outrage, there were suggestions the men had been fired as employees of a private security firm that provides bodyguard services to politicians.
Yet, there appears to have been no actual investigation by the police into possible offences, including intimidation and illegal possession of a military weapon.
An investigation by the Private Security Industry Regulatory Authority has been done and concluded. The authority says, however, that the weapon in the video is “not an AK-47”.
The experts we spoke to say it is indisputably an AK47 or a variant of the Russian-designed assault rifle. We wonder why the security authority can say the opposite – with such conviction.
Could it be they don’t want one of their member companies charged with illegal possession of an automatic weapon? Cover up, anyone?