This paper analyzes the economic and social underpinnings of rising political instability in South Africa such as poverty, unemployment and inequality. The analysis in this document indicates that the types of violence most feared by people, such as robbery and murder, have increased in South Africa in recent years. Additionally, a worrying picture is painted for the months ahead, with the growing frequency of demonstrations, student protest movements, combined with an economic crisis. The ANC will likely face a vocal challenge in August 2016 from both the EFF and the Democratic Alliance. The paper then reviews the patterns of violence across different categories before concluding with a brief analysis of the extent to which corruption, poor governance and lack lustre leadership exacerbate social turbulence.