Rasta is in his late twenties, and lives with his girlfriend on the street. They have both grown up on the streets and found each other. I met Rasta last year in June at the Youth Resolution, a shelter under the bridge in Woodstock with a group of transgender males (moffies). Rasta has a girlfriend who is HIV positive. I’m not sure how long they’ve been together. She doesn’t take her meds and they are both tik addicts. I last saw him when I sketched him. He sat for me while he was waiting for a friend.
Rasta is part of the 28 gang but recently he was beaten and almost burnt alive by them. If it wasn’t for his girlfriend he would have lost his life. She pleaded with the new street 28 gang leader to let him live and in exchange she gives him the R1000 social grant that she gets every mouth. The gang said that Rasta must remove himself and break down his shack, and he is no longer welcome in the 28 camp ground, near Trafalgar High School. Ever since then he has been on the run and no one knows where he sleeps, but we suspect its someway up near Table Mountain.
He came that day to sell some items he had found. He said that they wanted to kill him because someone had said that he told the cops about a car hijacking that took place at his parking space, where he works as a car guard. He is known to be the car guard working at the time of incident, the police knew where to find him and he admits to having told the cops what happened and identified the two suspects who were arrested. I asked him if the rumours about the 28 gang are true. If it’s true that if one of the 28 gang sees him, that he will get beaten up and peed on, and forced into sexual acts. I’ve heard it being talked about. He didn’t answer me but said that he doesn’t worry about what is said about him, and that he would one day get his revenge.