You are chilling with your friends and the next thing boom; tourists are taking a picture of you without your permission.— Sabelo Mkhabela
Very often tourists are seen walking in the townships wanting to have a clear picture of how people live their daily lives. Are the townships a true reflection of South Africa? What about the big 5 in the Kruger National Park and the night life in Johannesburg?
Sabelo Mkhabela wrote an article on ‘reverse township tours’. In the article Sabelo argues that township tours are invasion of privacy.
I loathe to witness tourists being dropped off in busloads “to see how people live”. It’s treating the township like a zoo and it’s plain disrespectful
The 'reverse township tour' video that went viral
Sabelo and his friends wanted to do a little experiment. they took to the streets in Camps Bay - Cape Town, where they started taking pictures and filming the locals. They wanted to get a reaction of how it feels like when tables are turned. The response portrayed in the video was very negative. The locals did not enjoy being filmed at all. The video has generated 41,894 views since it was uploaded on YouTube.
See the video below
Sabelo stands against tourists walking into townships taking pictures without permission and the same is not done in the suburbs. Sabelo, whose mother was a domestic worker for the longest time, thinks that black people in townships are conditioned into believing that these tourists are doing them a favour by coming into their space and take pictures.
This article first appeared on 702 : The 'Burb tour' - a reversal of the classic township tour