I went through an ongoing night following a bunch of South African police officers as they watched the dull, limited roads of Alexandra township on the edge of Johannesburg.
It was a disrupting experience.
Consistently, the police would stop their van, leap out and – as individuals around them yelled and flee – begin to pursue residents pretty much at arbitrary, it appeared to me, before pushing a couple of them into the rear of their vehicle.
One lady wasn’t wearing a veil, an official clarified.
Another might have been selling booty cigarettes.
A few people had, maybe, been standing excessively near one another, in spite of the fact that it was difficult to tell in obscurity. Etc.
Absence of trust in the state
The entire procedure felt subjective and disturbing – an away from of power.
Media captionWATCH: Andrew goes on the lookout with South Africa’s police
In any case, in the days from that point forward I’ve started to think about that night in Alexandra in an alternate way; to think about not the police’s conduct, but instead the hard-scholarly responses of the residents of the township.