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Saxonwold Shebeen: South Africa’s hilarious new meme

Forget the med- and edtech industries. You know what’s a real disruptive force on the internet at the moment? Shebeens. Specifically, shebeens in Saxonwold.

After the State Capture report revealed that Eskom CEO Brian Molefe spent quite a few nights in close proximity to the Gupta’s residence in Saxonwold, Johannesburg, Molefe suggested he may or may not have been visiting a nearby shebeen. Eskom, in a tweet to Memeburn, explained that it was in fact one of Molefe’s colleagues who mentioned this.

Regardless though, Twitter quickly latched onto the notion of a shebeen, and did not let go.

Saxonwold Shebeen: South Africa’s latest meme

The hashtag #SaxonwoldShebeen began trending on South African Twitter late Thursday, and is still being used by the network’s users at present. Granted, tweets have since slowed, but where hashtags fade, specific Twitter accounts seem to rise.

Saxonwold Shebeen has become one of South Africa’s most popular late 2016 memes on Twitter

One such account is @StateShebeen. With over 1900 followers and around 300 tweets to its name, it’s the most popular shebeen spoof account in South Africa at present.

Also, largely thanks to some quite hilarious tweets.

But it’s not just @StateShebeen. Even the City of Johannesburg’s official Twitter account is getting in on the joke, along with the likes of Nandos…

Google Search trends, interestingly, doesn’t quite explain the Twitter popularity.

“Saxonwold Shebeen” isn’t a massive search traffic hit, with Google noting that “Brian Molefe”, “Shebeen” and “Saxonwold” are seeing more searches.

However, “Shebeen in Saxonwold”, “#SaxonwoldShebeen” and “Saxonwold Gupta House” all feature as among the top searches in regards to the suburb.


The other top "Saxonwold" searchqueries include:

Searching for shebeen: an adventurer's story

Beyond Twitter and Google Search, South Africans are trying to locate the shebeen using Google Maps. (Hell, we've tried as well).

With the fervour of a Pokemon Go beginner, social media users have also headed to Saxonwold to search for the mystery shebeen.

Those who couldn't find it, also placed imaginary shebeens on Saxonwold's map, with some even rating the institution.

Users on Facebook have published events allegedly hosted at the infamous shebeen.

Does it actually exist?

For the record, no one in Saxonwold seems to know where this mysterious shebeen is, and this in part, has helped the meme grow in the past two days. But as Molefe stated, we can neither confirm or deny that a shebeen does exist in Saxonwold. Nor can social media. While it's a bit too early to call this South Africa's next big meme, we can't help but feel people aren't about to stop searching for Saxonwold Shebeen any time soon. Feature image: @StateShebeen via Twitter\ Update: Added a statement from Eskom.

Author | Andy Walker: Editor

Andy Walker: Editor
Camper by day, run-and-gunner by night, Andy prefers his toast like his coffee -- dark and crunchy. Specialising in spotting the next big Instagram cat star, Andy also dabbles in smartphone and game reviews over on Gearburn. More

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