News / South Africa

Pieter Dempsey
2 minute read
6 Jul 2018
2:32 pm

Tourists robbed on their way to visit Mandela’s house in Alexandra

Pieter Dempsey

Five tourists were recently robbed of their valuables in Alexandra, but their story has a happy ending.

Marianne Felix and Andre Snyman assisted the tourists after they were robbed.

Five tourists were recently robbed of their cellphones and handbags while visiting tourist destinations in Alexandra, reports Sandton Chronicle.

The Sandton Chronicle spoke to one of the victims, Felipa Gaudet, who is on holiday from the United States of America, together with her two children aged six and 17 and two of their friends aged 14 and 20.

READ MORE: German tourists robbed by armed gang in KZN

Gaudet says they have been in the country since 25 June, and they were on their way to go visit Mandela’s house in Alexandra. “As we went through the gates, we were approached by a man with a gun.”

She says there were three other men who all took their valuables such as cellphones, bags, and handbags. “Everything was in my bag, such as my passport, which I got renewed today.”

The tourist says one of the teenagers in the group saw one of the other men with a gun. “We are all a bit shaky and traumatised. My six-year-old just ran away, and she is still processing what happened by talking about it.”

She says the reaction from the community has been amazing, and that she is touched by all the offers of assistance. “The incident does not change my perception of the country, things like this happen and I am just grateful we are okay,” Gaudet says.

They will finish the tour they planned and, she says, so far the whole trip has been an amazing experience.

Dr Marianne Felix, who runs Yoga4Alex in Alexandra and had arranged the trip, phoned Andre Snyman, founder of Eblockwatch, who then put the word out about the incident.

Snyman also says the response has been amazing, and added people are donating cellphones, airtime, offering counselling and meals at their restaurants.

Felix says she had organised a driver she trusts to take them and two of the Yoga4Alex children to sites in Alexandra. “The driver’s phone was also stolen during the robbery, and I will be collecting the cellphones donated to the tourists.”

Snyman says Eblockwatch members want to show these kids that 1% of South Africans are bad, but 99% are amazing. “Take a look at the goodwill shown on my Facebook page. Members are giving them phones data, airtime, meals at restaurants, accommodation and counselling.”

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