Inside the mind of a looter: experts explain the motives behind the mayhem

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Experts says protests are often driven by people’s need for social change. (Photo: Gallo Images/ Getty Images)
Experts says protests are often driven by people’s need for social change. (Photo: Gallo Images/ Getty Images)

It was like something from a horror movie – crowds of people storming shopping centres around KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, helping themselves to everything and anything they could get their hands on.

Trucks torched, buildings stoned, roads barricaded and community members, armed with guns, sticks and batons, joining forces to resist wave after wave of looters on the rampage.

Protests are nothing new in South Africa or the rest of the world. There have been at least 7 000 protests in 153 countries over the past decade, according to the Mass Mobilisation Data Project, a US government thinktank that monitors citizen movements against governments.

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