ALEXANDRA – Mucky streams of putrid water run along the dirty pathways, and mounds of waste decay next to shacks built nearly on top of each other. Alexandra is a veritable rat utopia, but the humans want them to go. “Alex is like the Sandton for rats,” claims Peter Manganye, the man charged with getting rid of the rats. “It’s a perfect world for them to live in – a beautiful hideout. They don’t lack food, water or shelter. However, this place has been designated a ‘humans only’ area.”
The City of Johannesburg has allocated R2,5 million to remove the plague of rats from the inner-city township. “The rats are contravening the Group Areas Act, which prohibits rodents from living in or near a township,” said Joburg Mayor Parks Tau. “The rats have to go.”
Thousands of rats took to the dirt roads of Alex armed with knobkieries and pangas to protest the forced removal. “This is my hole. I was born here, I will die here,” squeaked one of the enraged rats. “Aluta Continua!”
Pest Control moved in to disperse the vermin, for they were contravening the Riotous Assemblies act. “Rats are not allowed to convene in numbers of three or more,” explained Manganye. “These machines pump toxic gas that will disperse them.”
Owls were deployed to patrol the dusty streets and pounce on any rat that’s out after curfew. Several rats were taken into custody for sneaking around the shacks without a pass.
On Wednesday, four owls out on patrol were decapitated by an angry mob a rebellious rodents. This rat-taliation led to threats of an all out war by members of Pest Control.
Mayor Tau called for a Total Onslaught to combat the Grys Gevaar. “We have run out of patience with this pestilence,” he said. “We are now in a noodtoestand (state of emergency).”
Yet, the rats remain defiant. “We will not go,” insisted an anonymous rat. “We are mammals, we have rights.”
It would seem that there is no end in sight for the War on Rattus. “In this fight, every dead rat is a victory,” maintains Manganye. “Still, we may have won the battle, but we haven’t won the war.” BN
Despite being previously disadvantaged, Dumisani managed to achieve the 30% mark required to pass matric. It was enough to enable him to secure his dream job: Being a journalist. Dumisani lives on his couch with his two plants.