Driver had no licence

2013-11-05 00:00

THE surviving driver of one of the two vehicles involved in the Nongoma accident that claimed eight lives, doesn’t have a driver’s licence.

Among the dead were four teenagers from the same school.

The fact that the suspect, who is approximately 22 years old, does not have a licence was confirmed by the Road Traffic Inspectorate (RTI) through a search of national traffic management system e-Natis.

The accident occurred on Saturday evening when the suspect, whose name is known to The Witness, driving a Ford sedan with three passengers collided with a stationary Nissan bakkie, carrying seven passengers, four of whom were high school pupils, on the P49/1 between Vryheid and Nongoma.

All seven of the bakkie’s occupants died. They were returning from a wedding. Only the driver and one of his passengers, who sustained serious injuries and was rushed to Grey’s Hospital in Pietermaritzburg, survived.

After initially fleeing the scene in the ensuing chaos as emergency services arrived, the suspect, who escaped relatively unscathed, allegedly booked himself into a local hospital under a pseudonym.

Hlobane police station commander Captain Johannes Mncwango said a manhunt was launched on Sunday to look for the male suspect in his twenties. “Once he realised there was nowhere for him to go he contacted us and we arrested him. The issue surrounding him not having a licence will form part of the investigation. He is in custody and will most likely appear before the Vryheid Magistrate’s Court [today],” said Mncwango.

He said he and the MEC for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison Willies Mchunu met earlier yesterday and visited several of the victims’ families. He said a funeral date had yet to be decided.

“If the suspect is charged he could either face eight charges of culpable homicide or eight charges of murder. I have been in communication with Mr Mchunu on this matter,” said Mncwango.

According to a statement by Mchunu’s office, the Ford hit the Nissan, which was parked on the side of the road with a punctured wheel.

“As the driver and other passengers were busy changing the wheel, a red Ford Safire crashed into the back of the Nissan, scattering passengers across the road,” said the statement.

Mchunu said the four school pupils were from Shongololo Combined School in Coronation, Vryheid.

‎“We are all very saddened by this accident which has claimed eight lives, including children. We will await the full report to establish the cause and come up with solutions and measures to ensure that similar accidents do not occur on this road in future,” said Mchunu.

The names of the deceased are:

1. Joseph Bethewell Zulu (49)

2. Phokubi Zulu (age unknown)

3. Mngeniseni Nkosi (20)

4. Nokhuthula Dlongolo (17)

5. Themba Khumalo (15)

6. Andile Masondo (16)

7. Siyabonga Zulu (19)

8. Bheki Dlamini (33).

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.