Another Zimbabwean has his dreadlocks shaved and stolen in South Africa
27 February 2013 | 9974 Views
- Alarms to deter Zimbabwe telecom theft | 16 January 2015
- Cop up for theft | 31 December 2014
- Stock theft decreases by 33% | 29 December 2014
- Kembo Mohadi accused of violence, theft and abuse of office | 02 November 2014
- 'Hungry' man in trouble for robbing Good Samaritan | 20 October 2014
- Prostitutes up for theft | 26 September 2014
Jack Maseko was recently mugged by three men in South Africa - they wanted nothing but his mobile phone and the dreadlocks he had spent three years patiently cultivating.
"They had a knife and cut off my hair with scissors. I still feel pain when I think about that night," the 28-year-old Zimbabwean tells the BBC.
"I used to see people selling dreadlocks on the streets and didn't know where it came from," he adds, still battling to believe what happened to him as he was walking home late at night in Johannesburg.
Dreadlocks can take several years to grow but many people do not want to wait and it is this need for instant long hair that is pushing the demand for ready locks in the black market, according to hairstylists.
The thieves are quick and sometimes ruthless and will use anything from a knife to broken glass to steal the prized hair - known on the streets as a cut and run.
I didn't go to the police because I didn't think they could do anything about it," said Maseko
The gangs operate in Johannesburg but the practice has also spread to the coastal town of Durban, KwaZulu-Natal.
Shoulder-length dreadlocks are sold for between 200 rand ($23; √Ç¬£15) and 700 rand, while longer ones cost as much as 2,000 rand.
Stylists use a new method known here as crocheting - using a thin needle, they are able to convert relaxed and European hair into dreads by weaving additional human hair pieces into the straight hair - giving a client long-locked hair instantly.
Because this is a fairly new technique, stylists have not built up stockpiles of natural locks, competition is intense and whoever has the locks has the market.
Most South Africans first heard of this phenomenon when the case of another Zimbabwean national Mutsa Madonko, who was attacked and had his hair shaved off outside a Johannesburg night club, made national headlines last month.
Those who have fallen prey to the hair thieves are not hopeful that their plight will be taken seriously.
The police however are calling for people to open cases of assault.
"We have only heard stories but no cases have been reported to us," says Johannesburg police spokesman Captain Lungelo Dlamini.
The police say that victims would be assisted in opening a case of assault, but add that there is no suitable charge for the theft of hair.
Other police officials said they believed people were reluctant to come forward out of embarrassment.
Embarrassing or not, many people are fearful of the now notorious hair thieves. For Mr Maseko, just the thought of having locks again is traumatic.
"I'm afraid to have dreadlocks, I'm afraid that they are going to cut them again. My friends have warned me not grow them, next time they might kill me," he says. - See more at: http://bulawayo24.com/index.php?id=editor&di=new_page#sthash.V1irPp8p.dpuf
Most Read Stories
- Married Zim woman stuck to Nigerian man after illicit s*x | 89659 views
- VP Mnangagwa finally succeeds Robert Mugabe - Report | 33322 views
- Mnangagwa bodyguard found dead after heated meeting with the VP | 31808 views
- Nigerian prostitutes to declare three days of free sex if.... | 29939 views
- Mugabe collapse, 27 guards suspended | 27281 views
- Mugabe falling meme goes viral | 25220 views
Staff Reporter | 03 March 2015 | 612 Views
Business Reporter | 03 March 2015 | 775 Views
Staff reporter | 03 March 2015 | 1509 Views
Staff reporter | 03 March 2015 | 1190 Views
Ndou Paul | 03 March 2015 | 886 Views
Mafu Sithabile | 03 March 2015 | 852 Views
Staff Reporter | 03 March 2015 | 2805 Views
Wilbert Mukori | 03 March 2015 | 1876 Views
Shylet Moyo | 03 March 2015 | 1556 Views
Staff reporter | 03 March 2015 | 2605 Views
Staff reporter | 03 March 2015 | 4063 Views
Staff reporter | 03 March 2015 | 4637 Views
Staff reporter | 03 March 2015 | 1891 Views
Staff reporter | 03 March 2015 | 3664 Views
Staff reporter | 03 March 2015 | 1601 Views
Business Reporter | 03 March 2015 | 2171 Views
Ricky Zililo | 03 March 2015 | 1892 Views
Marvelous Moyo | 03 March 2015 | 4127 Views
Owen Chirikure | 03 March 2015 | 2993 Views
Tendai Rupapa | 03 March 2015 | 1769 Views
Emily Mbewe | 03 March 2015 | 1733 Views
Molline Gagare | 03 March 2015 | 1890 Views
Tawanda Marwizi | 03 March 2015 | 2934 Views
Auxilia Katongomara | 03 March 2015 | 1193 Views
Staff reporter | 03 March 2015 | 2250 Views
Chris Chivinge | 03 March 2015 | 1750 Views
Lloyd Gumbo | 03 March 2015 | 1233 Views
Takunda Maodza | 03 March 2015 | 1387 Views
Staff reporter | 02 March 2015 | 1809 Views
Staff Reporter | 02 March 2015 | 10290 Views
Mafu Sithabile | 02 March 2015 | 2244 Views
Liberty Dube | 27 February 2015 | 3821 Views
TMZ | 21 February 2015 | 6540 Views
Staff reporter | 21 February 2015 | 1950 Views
Staff reporter | 20 February 2015 | 10581 Views
Entertainment Reporter | 20 February 2015 | 3398 Views
BlackAmericaWeb | 19 February 2015 | 7205 Views
Sapa | 19 February 2015 | 4877 Views