There’s evil, and then there are thieves

I read a story in a Ugandan paper about a woman who walked into a boutique one day, ready to pimp up her closet. However, she got more than she bargained for. The owner of this boutique was a crook who falsely accused unsuspecting customers of robbing him just so he could get more.
Rachel Garuka
Rachel Garuka

I read a story in a Ugandan paper about a woman who walked into a boutique one day, ready to pimp up her closet. However, she got more than she bargained for. The owner of this boutique was a crook who falsely accused unsuspecting customers of robbing him just so he could get more.

He told the lady to leave her bag on the counter and go on in one of the dressing rooms to try on a top. While she was in there, he slipped a top into her bag. When she came out, she said the top didn’t fit right and got her bag to leave.

Before she could even step out of the boutique, the man jumped up and grabbed her, shouting ‘thief thief’. The poor woman was puzzled and thought the man was joking. People around the building gathered around, ready for mob justice. Then she watched in horror as they searched her bag and found a top she hadn’t paid for.

Let’s just say that had the police not intervened, she would have been dead because not only did they undress her right down to her Eve’s suit, they beat her up too! She was taken away by the police to be questioned.

As I read that story, (which was written by the same woman by the way), it hit me that this could happen to anyone. How are you supposed to know someone will do something like that? Now, my bag never leaves my side lest I find myself walking the streets naked after someone plants a scarf in my bag!

I wonder if there is anyone who can tolerate a thief. Stealing of any kind is not only wrong but utterly distasteful. A friend of mine went to work one day, hit the bar with friends later on only to get back home and find everything he had ever worked for gone!

I think they might have left some cutlery and a pillow lying around. He suspects a former houseboy could have made a copy of the keys and came back to show him who the boss really is! He had to start from scratch.

I love living in Rwanda because I don’t have to worry about the sandals I left outside my house, the carpet I decided needed a few more days to aerate, the necklace I’m wearing and if it will get snatched, the moto guy who will claim he doesn’t have change and just speed off with my money, or a boutique owner sneaking tops into my bag!

That is not to say there is no theft in Rwanda, I’m sure there is, but it’s not something you hear about everyday. When President Yoweri Museveni said Uganda is full of thieves, he was spot on!

What happened to the days when thieves were burned with rubber tires? What happened to chopping off the arm of anyone caught or guilty of stealing? It might sound harsh but the day you get home and find all your stuff gone, or someone breaks into your business and empties the place, you’ll literally volunteer to be the one who lights the fire or chops the hand!

 

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