By Corruption Watch reporters
Corruption Watch’s series of outdoor public-awareness campaigns last week took our message from Zoo Lake – not far from the Gupta compound – to Soweto’s bustling Bara taxi rank, the University of Johannesburg’s vibey Bunting campus and then to Saturday crowds at Maponya Mall.
We caught the UJ leg on camera and got some students to tell us where corruption hurts them the most …
When Corruption Watch hit UJ campus on Friday, youngsters taking a lunch break outside the student centre were intrigued. First a giant inflatable computer was set up on the laws with the message “Guptas fly, government jumps”, and then a sultry airhostess from Air Gupta appeared with iPad in hand, urging passers-by to become fans of Corruption Watch’s Facebook page.
A crew of promoters – or activators – were on standby too to hand out anti-corruption licence disc stickers and rulers, which encouraged users to “draw the line” on corruption. There were also hand-outs in the shape of whistles, urging the public to “blow the whistle” on graft, and foldable paper jets on offer, also with the message “Guptas fly, government jumps”.
“You might get a favour from lecturers; or you might get a favour from a head of department. You might even get a favour from a security guard … corruption starts there with the minor things,” said fine arts student Owami Mbele who believes that corruption undermines one’s ability. “It kills the enrichment of success.”
Other students gathered at the campaign site expressed their ongoing frustration at not being able to get a booking to do their driver’s licence without paying a bribe. For the full experience, see our video here.
The media was quick to pick up on the Gupta gibe too, and yesterday eNews ran a package highlighting how the outdoor campaigning is just one of a series of tools we’re using to encourage communities to report their knowledge of corruption to us.
Although the medium may keep changing, the message remains the same: Corruption Watch wants you to report any abuse of public resources or power which is undermining the rights of South Africans.