Hard Livings (2021)

  • Documentary
  • 1h 35m

Cape Town is considered one of the most beautiful places in the world, but beneath her angelic mask lie scars. Scars obtained during Apartheid; scars that drive the underworld of gangsterism and drugs that has taken hold of the city. Rashaad Staggie was a man that made the most of these scars. With his twin, Rashied, as well as his other brothers, Solomon, Agmat, and Amien at his side, and through the use of violence and sheer cunning, their gang - The Hard Livings - became the most feared street gang in the whole of Africa. In 1996 Rashaad is killed and set alight by a group of fundamentalist Muslim vigilantes known as PAGAD ( People Against Gangsterism and Drugs); a march with initial peaceful intentions turning out to become one of the most gruesome murder scenes in South Africa’s history. PAGAD’s mission is simple: either drug lords are to stop their activities or they will face the wrath of Allah. The murder of Rashaad Staggie was broadcast in its entirety on South African television and was covered by international media such as CNN and BBC. Rashaad’s twin brother Rashied united all the street gangs in Cape Town to fight a war with an unflinching PAGAD. The South African police were on the outskirts, immobile as they attempted to curb the anarchy that might question the idea of South Africa’s fledgling new democracy. As Cape Town and South Africa prepared themselves for an urban war, the question on everyone’s mind was, “Where did this family come from, and will Cape Town ever be rid of gangs and gang violence?”


Jason Staggie


English, Afrikaans


South Africa