South Africa: Long Street Is Like Party Streets the World Over - a Magnet for Petty Thieves, Hustlers, Chancers and Conmen


Cape Town's Long Street is full of bars, clubs, tourists and young revellers, many of whom have had far too much to drink. This kind of environment, unfortunately, is a boon for petty criminals anywhere in the world.

Recently, veteran journalist Raymond Joseph spent a night out with friends in Cape Town's ode to a misspent youth, Long Street. The evening was marred when his group became the target of petty criminals who relieved them of a cellphone. Joseph penned an article about the experience and rightly shed light on the fact that Long Street and other areas of the CBD, especially those with abundant nightlife, feature some characters you just wouldn't take home to your mother.

As head of Safety & Security for the Cape Town Central City Improvement District (CCID), I know Long Street and its characters - good, bad and ugly -like the back of my hand. I would like to add to the dialogue on the central city, which Joseph has begun, by also citing what work is being done by public and private agencies to help keep citizens safe and businesses viable in the area.

But first, I'd like to sound a word of caution...

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