A free mobile phone for everyone who catches 60 rats

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South African charity Lifeline  is running an initiative to get rid of festering rats in the Joburg township of Alexandra. In a modern take of the story of the Pied Piper of Hamelin, Lifeline is offering a mobile phone to any resident who manages to capture and submit 60 rodents to the organisation.

According to a report in South Africa’s Mail & Guardian newspaper, Alexandra is so overrun by rats “They nibble through anything near the ground – rubbish and cars – and even bite sleeping children’s fingers.”

Image via M&G

The phones are provided by telecoms company 8ta as promotional material. Though initially reported as an 8ta initiative a company spokesman denied they are behind it:

You will have to ask Lifeline why they decided to use these promotional products. They do a lot of good community work, including in Alexandra. They used the promotional material to incentivise members of the community. I wasn’t aware this is how they were going to resolve the problem [of rats]. We won’t distance ourselves from Lifeline. It is a charity that does a lot of good work and our support for them is steadfast. I don’t want to deny the story. What I’m saying is that it’s not our initiative.

The initiative could suffer the cobra effect,with people breeding rats just to get a phone. Only time will tell whether this PR stunt will work.

Sources

http://mg.co.za/article/2012-10-26-00-catch-60-rats-win-a-phone
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/oct/29/south-african-authorities-offer-free-phone

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  • tinm@n

    Lol. A cat would happily love that job. Only problem would be counting the rats in a tummy

  • Cat Attack

    Even worse problem would be who would the cat call with the cellphone that it would have won?!?

  • http://www.facebook.com/shepherd.nhongo Shepherd Nhongo

    Fux…Paita mari apa…Kwakutoita seyehuku kupa makonzo maARV :-) toenda nawo Joni gore rino :-)

  • tinm@n

    Thats easy, its feline buddies that would also have 60 rats in their tummies. But then another problem, how will they know each others numbers?

  • Really guy?

    Breeding rats to get free cell phones! Already anticipating a rat shortage? -only a zimbo…

  • amparofuertez@yahoo.es

    I have a neighbor who is a real rat. Could be considerate ? Thanks

  • Nerudo

    eish on point! – black market mentality

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